BOSTON (WBZ-AM) -- Each month, “WBZ Cares” highlights a worthy non-profit organization and tells the story of what that organization does for the community. This month WBZ is profiling Samaritans, a non-profit suicide prevention service. Their mission is to reduce the incidence of suicide by alleviating despair, isolation, distress and suicidal feelings among individuals in the community, 24 hours a day; to educate the public about suicide prevention; to help those who have lost a loved one to suicide; and to reduce the stigma associated with suicide.
Samaritans Director of Community Education and Outreach Lauren Gablinske says suicide does not discriminate.
“My brother was the Captain of the Soccer team. He was a straight ‘A’ student. He was in college with a double major to go into cancer research. He had all the friends, he was the funny guy, so it didn’t make any sense for me and I think a lot of people feel that same way. Mental Health doesn’t discriminate just like cancer doesn’t discriminate, or any other disease. It’s just another disease that controls the mind, just like heart disease controls the heart,” Gablinske stated.
Grief Support Volunteer Facilitator Carly Burton says Samaritans' Grief Support Services helped her following the death of her sister.
“I found it really helpful in my journey to be able to provide some support to others. I felt like that was something that drew me out of my own grief and sort of helped give me a little bit more strength and sort of more will,” Burton said.
Board Member Jane Quercia has been with Samaritans for over 30 years.
“I still remember even after 31 years what it was like when you had no one to talk to, you didn’t have answers to anything and you didn’t know you weren’t going to have answers. So, it helps me give back. And it’s the only good thing that’s come out of my brother Tommy’s death is my affiliation with the Samaritans for so long, because hopefully I have helped a number of people over the years,” Quercia concluded.
WBZ NewsRadio1030's Doug Cope Reports