Suicide prevention, wellness events in the SCV announced

A student walks by hundreds of lanterns placed in the Honor Grove at College of the Canyons for the "Shine a Light" for suicide prevention and awareness on Tuesday, May 9, 2017. Katharine Lotze/The Signal

As part of suicide awareness month in September and domestic violence awareness month in October, local organizations have announced a series of events and training planned in the coming weeks.

“These events will offer great information for everyone,” said Larry Schallert, assistant director for College of the Canyon’s student health and wellness and mental health program. “There will be events to support our veterans, on suicide prevention, human trafficking and also a Latinx seminar, all coordinated by several local organizations.”

Schallert added that all events are supported by the Santa Clarita Valley suicide prevention, postvention and wellness committee, a group of local service providers and community members working to combat suicide in the SCV.

September events:

  • Support our veterans- A veterans health, mental health and wellness discussion: A panel of veterans, including a veteran who survived a suicide attempt, and mental health experts will speak about veterans mental health, the challenges that veterans face, and to provide veterans and the college community with resources to assist them to move forward. Held from noon-1:30 p.m. at the COC student center room 218/129 on Sept. 12.
  • Mental health and cannabis: Student health and wellness center teams up with Way Out Recovery for an informal tabling event in front of the center to share information about the connection between mental health and cannabis use. Held from 11 a.m.- 2 p.m. on Sept. 17 at the COC student center atrium.
  • Every life matters – Preventing suicide in teens and children: A presentation to provide parents, students, and other concerned community members with information about suicide risk and warning signs in children and adolescents and actions they can take to help prevent suicide. Held at 6:30 p.m. on Sept. 20 at Rio Norte Junior High School, located at 28771 Rio Norte Drive, in Valencia.
  • Human trafficking: It happens right here: Human trafficking survivor, author and masters of social work Harmony Dust is the keynote speaker, and together with panels of experts and local providers will help to understand human trafficking and how one can make a difference. A light breakfast will be served and resource tables from 8-8:30 a.m. Held from 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Sept. 21 at the COC East P.E. gym. RSVP at [email protected]


  • Suicide prevention intervention response training and means reduction: This session is designed to help participants identify the risk factors and warning signs of suicide, issues related to mental health, recovery and stigma and more. There will also be information on how firearms, pharmaceuticals (and other means) safety in regards to suicide prevention is important for all families. Held from 6- 8 p.m. on Sept. 24 at the Santa Clarita Council Chambers, located at 23920 Valencia Blvd.


  • LatinX mental health seminar: A program presented by Tarzana Treatment Center, examining creative strategies to promote resilience by addressing racial, economic, gender, sexual orientation, geographic, social, cultural and political boundaries within the Latinx community. A light lunch provided by ASG. Held from 2-2:30 p.m. on Sept 26 at the COC room Aliso 105.
  • Join the voices of recovery: Learn how mental health issues and substance use disorders impact the community. One panel will be comprised of professionals in the field of Recovery.  The second panel will be comprised of individuals solid in their recovery. Held from 5-8 p.m. on Sept. 27 at the Child & Family Center. For more information contact Charity Wabuke at 661-259-9439.

October events:

  • Kids expo: The largest kid-focused event in Santa Clarita, with thousands of local residents in attendance. Admission is free for all. Every dollar raised goes directly to Child & Family Center, which provides mental health and behavioral services to over 700 children each week. Visit for details, or contact the Center 661-259-9439. Held from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. on Oct. 21 at Golden Valley High School.
  • Ask the psychiatrist: An opportunity for community members, faculty, staff and students to ask questions of nationally recognized local psychiatrist Dr. Alex Kopelowicz, from Olive View UCLA regarding mental health, medications and treatment options in an informal Q&A setting. Held at 6:30 p.m. on Oct. 30 at COC’s Canyons Hall 211.

November events:

It is time to open our eyes- Suicide risk in the pediatric and adolescent population: A presentation for the medical staff and the greater health care community at Henry Mayo Newhall Memorial Hospital on suicide risk in the pediatric and adolescent population, screening for suicide risk,  supporting survivors of suicide loss and community resources. Held at 12:30 p.m. on Nov. 1.

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