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People encouraged to come together for International Survivors of Suicide Loss Day

People in Grande Prairie are preparing to join others around the world to remember those they have lost to suicide. This Saturday, the Suicide Prevention Resource Centre will be hosting an event for International Survivors of Suicide Loss Day.

“It’s a type of loss that is very complicated and only people who have gone through this understand just how difficult it is compared to other loses,” says Program Coordinator Faris Atkinson. “You can come and not say anything and still feel like people get what you’re going through and just being with each other is so important.”

The day was first recognized in Grande Prairie in the early 2000s with the city becoming one of the first places in Canada to hold it.

This year’s event will feature a documentary screening and a lunch and will also give people a place to talk about their loved one.

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“People are encouraged if they like to bring a picture of the person that you are thinking of this day. This is a safe place where people can do that… Sometimes going to a survivor day event like this is the first opportunity people have to really start to move forward through that grief,” Atkinson says.

This event is also very important to her as she lost her daughter 20 years ago.

“This is therapeutic for me as well because I get to revisit where I’ve been and how far I’ve come; I get to honour my daughter in the work that I’m doing with others and I’m able to have a deep level of empathy because I’ve walked the walk.”

The event will be held from 10 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the SPRC office in Nordic Court.

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