Saint Mary’s Social Work Club supports suicide prevention, awareness
Gina Twardosz | Friday, October 26, 2018
Saint Mary’s Social Work Club looks to show support and solidarity by participating in Saint Joseph Health System’s Run/Walk for Suicide Awareness. The Race to Save Lives and the Walk For Hope will take place on Nov. 3 at the Mishawaka Medical Center.
The event consists of both a five mile and 10 mile run and a three mile walk for non-runners. Both runs will begin at 9 a.m. and the walk will start at 9:15 a.m.
Sophomore Jesse Poorman, vice president of Social Work Club, said she, and many other Belles will attend the event in order to raise awareness for suicide prevention.
“We wanted to show that Saint Mary’s cares so that we can bring our communities together,” she said.
Junior Sophia McDevitt, a social work major, said, sadly, suicide is often a common occurrence among clients of social workers.
“As social workers we often deal with people who are facing some of the hardest situations in their lives,” she said. “Sadly, this makes the possibility of a client considering suicide higher than in other service fields.”
McDevitt said social workers are often trained to recognize indicators of suicide in their clients.
But, showing support at events like these can help facilitate positive change, Poorman said.
“When students attend community events like this one, they’re making a small step towards a big difference,” she said. “Just being there and showing support contributes to a bigger change.”
The club, and all the community events that Social Work Club is apart of, are open to all students who want to volunteer and get involved with the South Bend community, Poorman said.
“Social Work Club is trying to get more involved in the community and involved with the local issues in the community by doing more outreach,” she said. “We’re doing some events with St. Margaret’s House and we’re doing some other things with the Center for the Homeless and Healthwin.”
McDevitt said community involvement is an essential part of the College’s Social Work program.
“It’s important that the Saint Mary’s Social Work Club is connected to the South Bend community, because how can one do social work without a community,” she said. “That is something the Social Work Department strives to communicate with us. Our classes often involve going to community organizations like St. Margaret’s House and Healthwin to help us get experience, but also to help us become an active part of the South Bend community.”
Poorman said the study of social work can benefit a student even if they do not want to pursue a career as a social worker.
“Learning about social work helps to make you more aware of the issues and problems in the world,” she said.