Did you know that suicide is the 2nd leading cause of death for Alabama children ages 10-14 and the 3rd leading cause of death for ages 15-24? Studies show that ongoing family conflicts, abuse, violence, lack of family unity, and parents’ mental health issues can raise a child’s suicide risk. A history of foster care and adoption also has been linked to children having a higher suicide risk.
SPEAK— which stands for Suicide Prevention, Empowerment, Awareness, Knowledge— is a collaborative effort involving the Huntsville Hospital Foundation, local school systems, Wellstone Behavioral Health, and others that work with children. The program addresses the increasing incidence of suicide and raises awareness about mental illness and provides resources and education through annual training’s, the SPEAK North Alabama app and more.
MCFAPA is excited to have Dr. Aparna Vuppala from Behavioral Sciences of Alabama come to speak about the SPEAK program and how they help those by offering the resources needed to prevent future tragedies. Dr. Vuppala is one of the few practicing child psychiatrists in North Alabama and is a valuable resource for our community.
Keep an eye out for the RSVP link for childcare. We hope to see you there!