University hosts lighting ceremony for those affected by suicide

JACKSON, Tenn. — One university sheds light on suicide awareness with students and local community.

Suicide Prevention awareness month takes place in September, and Freed-Hardeman University, also known as FHU, decided to bring awareness to their campus in a bright way.
FHU invited students, faculty, and the community to come out and show support to those who have been affected in any way by suicide.

President David Shannon of FHU tells of the importance of hosting this event on their campus.

“A time to reflect back on individuals that we’ve loved that have passed on through self inflicted wounds, and then also to offer support to their closest friends and to their family members.” Shannon continues, “And it’s a way for us to recognize the opportunity we have every day to walk through life together. ”

Participants were also able to create luminaries, as a way to honor those affected by suicide.

Nadine Mcneal, Director of the social work program at FHU, shares on the importance behind the lights. “They’re going to be drawing on or writing names on just bringing awareness to someone in their life, perhaps who has committed suicide or someone that they are aware of who are, that they know, who has committed suicide. So that they can bring attention and awareness to that individual and just remember them.”

With so many struggling behind closed doors, it is important to be supportive.

Nathan Judd, the Director of the University Counseling Center, shares his hope for those who hear about this event and those to come. “People who are struggling with suicidal thoughts feel very alone. And so we just want to let everybody know you’re not alone. We love you. We’re here for you and just open the conversation so everybody can know it’s, it’s normal to get in a dark spot and we’re here for you. We’ll support you in any way we can. ”

FHU plans to hosts a suicidal awareness event annually, while continuing to give valuable resources to those in need.

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