Trevor Project’s September Project Wants LGBTs to Break Their Silence
According to the Trevor Project’s Executive Director Abbe Land, three words can save a life.
That’s why the Trevor Project, a non-profit that since 1998 has been focused on suicide prevention among LGBT youth, has teamed up with 20 national partners to raise awareness for its annual Talk to Me project. The idea for the campaign stems from research (like this, though Trevor lists a few more to back up its claims) showing that “help-seeking behaviors and access to care can have a dramatic effect on suicide prevention).
The campaign wants you to talk about your issues, and sometimes more importantly invite your friends to talk about theirs.
“It’s important to talk because just telling one person about your deepest and darkest secret can make you see you’re not alone, among other things,” says Abbe Land, executive director and CEO of the Trevor Project. “Not talking isolates you and makes you feel there’s no hope.”
The third annual Talk To Me project comes just in time for the Suicide Prevention Awareness Month. This year, the campaign has more friends than ever, claiming 20 participating organizations, including: Active Minds, American Association of Suicidology, American School Counselors Association, Campus Pride, Children’s Mental Health Network, City Year, Family Equality Council, GSA Network (Gay-Straight Alliance Network), GLAAD, GLAD (Gay & Lesbian Advocates and Defenders), GLSEN (Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network), HRC (Human Rights Campaign), Matthew Shepherd Foundation, National Association of School Psychologists, National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, PFLAG (Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays), RAINN (Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network), SAVE (Suicide Awareness Voices of Education), Teach For America, and To Write Love on Her Arms.
“We’ve always had a lot of support, but this is the most to-date,” Land told SFGN. “Every organization wants to know it’s part of helping make sure people don’t take their own lives.”
Everyone seems to care.
The idea for Talk to Me came about when the Trevor Project recognized that young people my not fully appreciate the power of talking about suicide and using that word.
“We wanted to raise the awareness of talking and that you could just call us to talk,” Land said, pointing out that you can call the Trevor Project 24 hours a day, 365 days a year (Call Trevor Lifeline at 866-488-7386, or chat with a trained counselor at TheTrevorProject.org)
The campaign asks you to get involved in one of three ways (or all three, of course):
- Pledge to be a person that anyone can talk to when they need support
- Take Action by asking that members of Congress fund inclusive suicide prevention training and programs by re-authorizing the Garrett Lee Smith Memorial Act (H.R. 2734)
- Train a Trevor Lifeguard by registering for a free Trevor Lifeguard Workshop, a best practice for training suicide prevention for grades 6th through 12th.
For more information, go to trevortalktome.org.