Culminating September’s Suicide Prevention and Awareness Month, Didi Hirsch Mental Health Services will hold its 21st Annual Alive & Running 5K for Suicide Prevention on Sunday, September 29, 2019 beginning at 7:00 a.m. at West 88th Street & La Tijera Boulevard just north of LAX. (Schedule of Events is listed below).
Actress Catherine Hicks (7th Heaven) will emcee the event, musical artist Alex Boyé will perform and suicide prevention advocate Talinda Bennington will speak.
Alive & Running is a life-affirming event that raises funds and awareness for the Didi Hirsch Suicide Prevention Center—the first and only one of its kind in the nation. Founded in 1958, the Center recently relocated to Century City to expand its national reach by nearly doubling the counselors answering its 24/7 multilingual Crisis Line, and growing services for people affected by suicide. Didi Hirsch now offers teen suicide bereavement support groups as part of the new Everychild Suicide Prevention Project.
To help focus attention on suicide prevention Didi Hirsch partnered with Born This Way Foundation’s #BeKind21 campaign, which urges participants to make kindness a habit. Registering or donating to Alive & Running is one act of kindness promoted by Didi Hirsch. Click here to see its full #BeKind21 Calendar.
Alive & Running is chaired by Platinum Sponsor Pamela Kluft, Vice Chair of Didi Hirsch’s Board of Directors, who lost her sister, Beth, to suicide in 2012. “Alive & Running provides a sense of connection and community for people who have experienced the trauma and pain of suicide attempts or loss. By sharing our stories, we erase the stigma of mental illness, which encourages people to reach out for help and saves more lives,” said Kluft, a Beverly Hills resident.
Melissa Rivers, New York Times best-selling author, entertainment journalist and award-winning producer who joined Didi Hirsch Mental Health Services’ Board of Directors earlier this year, said, “Suicide Prevention Awareness Month asks us to have open conversations about loss from suicide, suicide attempts and suicidal thoughts. We can reduce and prevent suicides when we can actually talk about it freely and without fear of being stigmatized.” Rivers was a college student when her father, television producer Edgar Rosenberg died by suicide. In 2016, Didi Hirsch Mental Health Services honored her with a Beatrice Stern Media Award at its Erasing the Stigma Awards for her openness about her father’s suicide and her passionate efforts to raise suicide awareness among youth and college students.
Alex Boyé, a multicultural musical artist who has shared the stage with the likes of Jay-Z, Tim McGraw and Justin Timberlake, is passionate about spreading messages of hope and light through his music—especially to people struggling with mental illness. He will perform his suicide prevention anthem “Bend Don’t Break.” The video was produced by American Idol judge Randy Jackson, and included hundreds of residents of Herriman, Utah, a community which grieved the loss of several teens to suicide in one year. Boyé performed at Didi Hirsch’s Alive & Running 5K for Suicide Prevention in 2018 and is a recipient of Didi Hirsch’s 2019 Mental Health Ambassador Award.
Suicide prevention advocate Talinda Bennington is a guest speaker at Alive & Running. In 2017, Talinda’s husband, Linkin Park’s Chester Bennington, died by suicide. Determined to prevent the pain her family experienced, Talinda partnered with Give an Hour and The Campaign to Change Direction and Launched 320 Changes Direction – an effort named in honor of Chester Bennington whose birthday was March 20th. The goal of 320 Changes Direction is to ensure that families are equipped to support loved ones dealing with mental health challenges. Talinda has become an advocate for this effort and speaks regularly on panels, media and events about the need to change our culture so that those who are suffering emotionally can get the care they deserve.
Fletcher Family Foundation is Alive & Running’s Presenting Sponsor. Power 106 is a media partner for the event. Los Angeles magazine is also a media partner for Alive & Running as well as for Didi Hirsch’s iconic Erasing the Stigma Awards, which take place in April.
7:00 am Same-Day Registration
7:30 am Pre-Race Program
7:45 am Warm-up and Stretch
8:00 am 5K Walk/Run Begins!
9:00 am Entertainment