Juneau hosts 'Every Mile Is Worth It' run for suicide prevention

The SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium (SEARHC) Behavioral Health/Suicide Prevention Program will host second annual “Every Mile Is Worth It” fun run for suicide awareness and prevention at 9:30 a.m. on Saturday, June 2, on the Treadwell Trails in Douglas.

Race day registration starts at 9 a.m. at the Sandy Beach shelters, and the fun run starts at 9:30 a.m. There will be a 5k (3.1-mile) maze-style course for the runners, and a one-mile walk. This is a Southeast Road Runners event, and registration forms are available at: http://www.southeastroadrunners.org/race-calendar.html. The entry fee is $10 for adults (preregistration) and $12 day of race, and the race fee will be waived for all youth  age 18-younger.

This event is a fundraiser for the Southeast Alaska Youth Ambassadors program that will launch in October 2012. One high school student from each Southeast community will be part of the Youth Ambassadors, who will work with their fellow students and their communities to promote positive activities and provide awareness of suicide prevention. SEARHC is collaborating with the NAMI (National Alliance of Mental Illness-Juneau), Juneau Suicide Prevention Coalition, Slow Food Southeast Alaska, Full Circle Farm, the Central Council of Tlingít and Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska (CCTHITA) Environmental Youth Leadership Team and Justin Powell of Inner Chi Massage Therapy to host this event.

There will be running hats for the first 75 entrants and 250 ChicoBags will be given out to participants, plus there will be a variety of other prizes donated by Juneau merchants. Last year nearly $2,000 in prizes were given away to participants, and just about everybody won a prize.

The race will be followed by the Slow Food Southeast Alaska quarterly potluck, and representatives from Slow Food Southeast Alaska and Full Circle Farm will be on hand to discuss local food systems and how to connect people back to the land and waters that provide our foods. Massage therapist Justin Powell will be at Sandy Beach at 8 a.m. to provide pre-race sports massages (at $5 per five minutes) and $1 per minute post-race massages. He will donate $10 to the Youth Ambassadors program from every massage he books the day of the race. The CCTHITA Youth Environmental Leadership Team will have information on its “Partners Against Plastics” program to encourage people to use reusable shopping bags.

For more information about the race, contact Megan Gregory at 463-6645 or mgregory@searhc.org.

Tléil Ayeelaxàajeekl (Don’t despair). If you are stressed out and need help, the 24/7 toll-free SEARHC Help Line, 1-877-294-0074, is available for use by any Southeast Alaska resident who might need help working through a crisis. The SEARHC Help Line is staffed by a team of master’s-degree-level mental health therapists who will listen and provide effective, compassionate and confidential care. The SEARHC Help Line is offered as a free resource to complement the care provided at SEARHC Behavioral Health clinics.

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