Rock the Change is back to break the silence about suicide in the community.
More than 400 people turned out for last year’s fundraising concert, bringing in $8,000 to enhance the education programs at Suicide Information and Education Services.
Organizer Stacie Moore, 21, founded the all-ages concert at Bower Ponds last year in light of the six youth who killed themselves in Red Deer over the last two years.
“I didn’t know the boys who took their lives,” said Moore, noting some of her friends did. “It just broke my heart that kids do not know there are other ways to deal with stuff. When I went to school there was no talk about suicide or depression. Now that I actually get to go into the schools and give kids another way out, I am involved in making a difference.”
Moore landed her dream job as an elementary educator at the centre shortly after the concert. Moore said she speaks to kindergarten to Grade 6 students about ways to deal with stress and feelings before they reach the point of depression.
“I just want people to know (about) just talking to someone or coming to realization that everything is not going to be OK in the next few days but it will get better,” said Moore. “No matter how long it takes, it will get better.”
This year’s concert is slated for June 1 from 3 to 6 p.m. at the Bower Ponds stage. There is no charge but donations will be accepted.
Moore is still putting the musical lineup together and she is looking for more bands, volunteers and sponsors.
For more information, email Moore at firstname.lastname@example.org or find Rock the Change RD on Facebook.
If you need help, contact Suicide Information and Education Services at 403-342-4966 or the Alberta Health Services Mental Health Help Line at 1-877-303-2642.