Oswego’s first SAVE to help save lives


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December 9, 2015

OSWEGO, NEW YORK– Suicide was the tenth leading cause of death for all ages in 2013.There were 41,169 suicides in 2013 in the United States a rate of 12.6 per 100,000 is equal to 113 suicides each day or one every 13 minutes.

A core group of survivors and volunteers are a part of the first US charter in Oswego.  With their passion and dedication as volunteers and survivors, SAVE CNY serves all of the Central New York region to bring awareness and educate the public about suicide. A representative and survivor herself, Grace Maxen explains the dedication and importance of SAVE and it’s meaning to the organization

“It’s very interesting because the group is comprised of mostly survivors. So that means someone that lost someone to suicide or has overcome a suicidal attempt or you know a threat themselves. Um so we all have different passion.” Maxen said. 

In Oswego county an average rate of 14.1 per 1000,000 youth ages 15-19 were hospitalized self-inflicted injuries from 2004-2006, compared to 9.8 in Central NY and 9.2 in New York State. As an Oswego native, and a survivor herself, Andrea Michalski is determine to make her community more aware and alert about an issue that is being kept quiet for too long.

“The suicide in our community has become, its just become such an epidemic really along with the heroine epidemic ah a lot of the times I believe the two go hand in hand and just seems like more often you’re hearing about these teens attempting suicide the loved ones left behind that are attempting suicide um the cutting in the high school just the people having the general feeling that nobody cares and whats the point and I wanted to do something about that.”  Michalski said. 

First SAVE awareness held in Oswego was just enough of a turn out to get the public comfortable to talk about an issue not talked about enough. Many had the opportunity to hear a courages group of panelist who spoke about their struggled journey and road to recovery.

“If we talked about them you know we could take some of the shame away from the people who are struggling with these things and theres nothing shameful about hurting and feeling like you’re alone.”

There are many ways to help. For more information about SAVE or how to help, please visit www.save.org

SAVE representative and volunteers at Oswego's first suicide awareness. From left to right Tony Matherne, Andrea Michalski, Craig Gilkey and Grace Maxen. Photo credit: Geselle Martinez
SAVE representatives and volunteers at Oswego’s first suicide awareness event. From left to right Tony Matherne, Andrea Michalski, Craig Gilkey and Grace Maxen.
Photo credit: Geselle Martinez