QUINCY -- The Adams County Suicide Prevention Coalition reports that its annual fundraiser, Behind the Mask, raised more than $50,000, which will be used to continue local suicide prevention efforts.
The fundraiser was held on Saturday. The event, which was attended by more than 225 people, featured music from the Kay Brothers, a bluegrass band from Columbia, Mo., and the Quincy Community Gospel Choir, under the direction of Koretta Sykes. Also featured as entertainment were dancers from Q-City Dance and the Amy Veach Dance Troupe. Other performers at the event were Mike Shull and Steve Reis.
"Again, the Quincy area was very generous in supporting an important cause," said Barbara Baker Chapin, who is the chairman of the Adams County Suicide Prevention Coalition. "We had a great turnout, and I think those who attended enjoyed the evening."
This year's fundraiser was organized by Dawn Whitcomb, Kathleen Birsic, Ally Bakrow, Todd Shackelford and Kris Kutcher.
The ACSPC was founded in 2012 by Blessing Hospital and Transitions of Western Illinois. Through the years other social service agencies, area schools, and some passionate community citizens have joined the coalition. Its mission is to prevent the tragedy of suicide in the region.
"Suicide is a significant public health problem in our country and in our community," Chapin said. "Annually, more than 45,000 individuals die by suicide in our country. In Adams County, since the fall of 2017, 28 individuals have died by suicide. The coalition wants to people in our area to know that suicide is never the solution to life problems. There are other solutions and help is available."
The Adams County Suicide Prevention Coalition's website provides information to assist those who may have thoughts of suicide, as well as information for family members and friends.
The coalition's website is acsuicideprevention.org.
The National Suicide Hotline is also available 24 hours a day -- call 800-273-8255.