LIHUE — Bridget Arume’s efforts at brightening some of the artwork created by students caught the eye of Clarence Sales, coach for the Team Central basketball program Thursday.
Arume, of the Kauai Suicide Prevention Task Force, was busy getting ready for the sign-waving campaign which took place at five sites around the island, coinciding with Sept. 7 through 12 as Suicide Prevention Week.
“This sounds like something the players should get involved in,” Sales said. “We can’t just have them playing basketball. The players need to get involved in the community, too.”
Mayor Bernard Carvalho Jr. said in addition to the Suicide Prevention Week, the month of September is Suicide Prevention Awareness Month, presenting a proclamation to members of the Kauai Suicide Prevention Task Force.
Arume said this is the first time the group has coordinated sign-waving at more than one site. Task force leaders were scheduled to be joined by community members, including students, in raising awareness about suicide and suicide prevention through the sign-waving. Sites included Princeville, Kapaa, Lihue, the Kauai Community College entrance in Puhi, and in Hanapepe.
Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death among Hawaii residents of all ages, and is the single leading cause of fatal injuries in the state between 2010 and 2014. Suicide claims the life of a person every 12.95 minutes in the United States. In Hawaii, suicide claims a victim every two days.