Sometimes life doesn't quite go as planned and when my brother of 15 years old decided to take his life... We didn't know how to react, what to do or how to feel... Complete devastation and horror swept through my family like a plague filled with unexplainable grief. Within hours of getting the life-altering news, first responder, Jackie Rosen, CEO of FISP walked through our doors with love, compassion and guidance. The butterfly on her shoulder gave me a glimpse of hope that we were going to make it through... That was almost five years ago. Since then, FISP has created and taken part in many events, seminars and initiatives that have changed the lives of countless people. With the intention of erasing the stigma on suicide and educating people on the importance of being aware of the signs of suicide, substance abuse and mental illness, people every where are receiving the help they need to survive. One of my favorite initiatives that FISP started is the HOPE Sunshine Clubs for middle and high school students. My brother's school was the first to have a HOPE Club and since then, more than 50% of high schools in Broward County have a HOPE Club. I myself am a high school teacher and it has been the perfect opportunity for me to help students that share the same feelings that my brother silently felt. I have the advantage to reach students at my school and provide them with a club that provides education on the importance of knowing the signs of suicide, how to help those in need and why we need to be kind to one another. I know this club has and will help more students then I will ever know, but in the end... The HOPE Club has also helped to save me. Thank you FISP for your relentless efforts and unwavering vision to help people who are suffering. Lots of LOVE to everyone at FISP, you have changed my life!
FISP is a wonderful organization. We became involved because our son took his life 19 months ago, and Jackie was there for us. They are dedicated to helping survivors of suicide, as well as educating, prevention program developments and research. They want to STOP SUICIDE, and provide help and support to those contemplating suicide.
My son took his own life. My husband and I needed to find a place where others might be able to understand our pain, where we wouldn't hear banalities such as "he's in a better place" or "it's time to get on with your lives." We needed a place that was nonsectarian and where we could feel free to speak without fear of judgement. I was shocked that the group was so small. The intimacy of such a small group has helped us tremendously.
I called the Florida Initiative for Suicide Prevention after a family member took his life and our family needed help. I live in another part of the state and needed referrals for groups and other resources. FISP made contact with and provided such compassion and support for my family. I will be forever grateful.