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Attending NASCOD conference benefits emotional support service

Thanks!  Arkansas Crisis Center is sharing inspiring outcome for emotional support after attending NASCOD conference last year.

  “A few of you have heard my good news already, and by request I am sharing it with everyone else! At the 2009 NASCOD conference in Lancaster, PA, I became completely inspired by the new developments in online emotional support and came back to Arkansas committed to bringing this new service to my state. However there was just one little hurdle to overcome… FUNDING! 2009 was not a great year for my agency financially, and there was absolutely nothing in reserve for new ventures, but I didn’t let that stop me. I’ve learned if you have a dream, share it with others. It can never be a reality if you keep it to yourself. So I told anyone and everyone about online emotional support. Thanks to Jill Ordonez, James Wright and Neil McKechnie, I knew enough about the project to give a pretty good sales pitch. And then one day, I met a man who had lost his son the year before to suicide. He now goes to schools and churches to give suicide awareness presentations. He used to close each presentation by giving out his personal cell # and encouraging his listeners to reach out if they were having thoughts of suicide (boy was he relieved to learn he could just give out our hotline #! but I digress…). Before he left the parking lot after most of his presentations, he had already received several texts. He never received a single phone call. After learning about online emotional support, he wanted to know what it would take to bring this to our state. After a few meetings and time spent dreaming together of a suicide-safer state, the foundation established in honor of his son, the Alex Blackwood Foundation for Hope provided $31,000 to become the first sponsor for our new online crisis chat. We will be soft launching in April, so keep your fingers crossed for us! Had I not taken the time to attend the NASCOD conference last year, none of this would have happened. So… will you be at the 2010 conference?” – Shelby Chandler, Arkansas Crisis Center Next NASCOD conference: October 14-16, 2010, St-Louis, MO


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