ONE Health Ohio and the Butterflies & Hope Memorial Foundation presented a $10,000 donation to Alta Care in support of their Linkages Program and its commitment to educate children on depression and suicide.

The suicide rate in the U.S. rose 24% from 2007 to 2017 according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Among people ages 10 to 24 years old, it jumped 56%. Suicide not only has a direct effect on society and loved ones due to the loss but it leaves survivors with devastating traumatic grief.

Butterflies and Hope Memorial Foundation and ONE Health Ohio recognize the importance of early detection, identification and intervention with suicide related issues as a way to combat these dreadful events. Both groups want to support and help expand Alta’s work with suicide screening programs through local schools with a gift of $10,000.

Alta Behavioral Healthcare’s Linkages Program provides an educational and interactive program teaching Mahoning County Middle and High School students the signs and symptoms of depression. The program utilizes Signs of Suicide, which is listed on SAMHSA’s National Registry of Evidence-based Programs and Practices, to instruct the students about what they should do if a friend, a family member, or they themselves, feel depressed or suicidal.

Dr. Ronald Dwinnells, CEO of ONE Health Ohio and Founder/President of Butterflies and Hope states, “I would love to be able to completely stamp out all suicides and thus avoid the incredible devastation suffered by those left behind, but, if we can simply help identify just one more child and one more family to avoid devastating loss and grief through this gift then every penny was worth it! The Valley is fortunate to have Alta to lead the charge to combat this ruinous human condition afflicting so many of us.”

“The generous award of $10,000 from The Butterflies & Hope Foundation and ONE Health Ohio will allow us to serve up to 4 additional schools in Mahoning and Trumbull Counties”, says Joe Shorokey, CEO of Alta. “In doing so, the Linkages Program will potentially extend its reach for Depression and Suicide Education to potentially 700 more students and suicide screenings for up to 100 more students”.