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A nonprofit suicide prevention program serving Boulder County youth announced Thursday it is changing its name and ending its partnership with the parent company to better serve those in need.

Newly named Rise Against Suicide, which operated as the Second Wind Fund of Boulder County since 2009, split from the Second Wind Fund of Colorado. The nonprofit is fully independent from Second Wind Fund, but both organizations will continue the mission of decreasing child and youth suicide by removing financial and social barriers, a news release stated.

Rise Against Suicide Executive Director Jenna Clinchard said the name change will help those in need more easily find the program.

“The name wasn’t descriptive to what we did or who we serve in the community,” Clinchard said. “We did this at this time so parents can find us. We want to start working with our community partners and hospitals and let them know we are here.”:

And now — through the coronavirus pandemic — Clinchard said the nonprofit is available and ready to serve those in need.

Rise Against Suicide primarily serves individuals who are uninsured or underinsured by covering the cost of treatment. The organization works with school staff in the Boulder Valley and St. Vrain Valley school districts to identify students struggling with suicide ideation, the release stated. Those students are then connected to a licensed therapist.

“It’s such a unique resource in the community. It’s connecting students to therapists that can actually help them,” said Mary Campbell, secretary of the nonprofit and school counselor at Peak to Peak Charter School. “It’s really about eliminating barriers, and working to ensure students get help. It eliminates barriers that include money, transportation and language.”

Tammy Lawrence, director of student support services for Boulder Valley School District, said the partnership with the nonprofit has been invaluable. Prior to the pandemic, Lawrence said the district was already seeing a steady increase in need for mental health support.

“Requests have increased through the pandemic,” Lawrence said, adding that concrete numbers are not yet available. “Knowing that mental health is one of the top pieces of the pandemic because of isolation, we are so appreciative of all of the efforts that Rise has given to us as an organization.”

Campbell said the extent of the impact of the pandemic will unfold with time.

“I think as we go forward, there are going to be more referrals,” she said. “Because of the pandemic, family situations have changed. There’s job loss, home loss, loss of security … any kind of loss is a risk factor for suicide.”

Because of that, Campbell said it’s even more important that community members are aware and looking for warning signs in children.

Clinchard said the split from Second Wind Fund will not impact Rise Against Suicide’s funding, since it has already been funded by the community.

“We are grateful for the opportunity to have worked with and built our foundation under the leadership of Second Wind Fund. We will continue to collaborate with them as appropriate to ensure all kids are getting the help they need,” stated Bob Kilcullen, board chair of Rise Against Suicide in the release. “We settled on the name, Rise Against Suicide, because we envision this as a call to the community to come together to prevent youth suicide; we can’t help these kids without our community’s support.”


Suicide warning signs in children

  • Changes in school performance
  • Defiance of authority, truancy, theft or vandalism
  • Persistent disobedience or aggression
  • Frequent temper tantrums or outbursts of anger
  • Changes in sleeping or eating habits
  • Excessive worry, fear or anxiety
  • Hyperactivity
  • Persistent nightmares

Source: Mental Health Colorado

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