K12 Gallery & TEJAS is currently working on a community art project called SOS: Signs of Suicide.

SOS: Signs of Suicide
is a visual arts awareness campaign created by local artists and teens participating in K12 Gallery & TEJAS's AIT After School Art Program.  The SOS imagery works to dispel myths and inform the public about facts associated with suicide amoung young people aged 13-25.  As a year-long campaign, a collection of 15 panels with 30 large paintings will travel to local schools, universities, and organizations in order to educated students and the general public about the signs of suicide.  The collection of panels will also be on diplay at K12 Gallery & TEJAS during the entire month of January.

The signs of Suicide project will kick off on October 23, 2016 at the Out of Darkness community walk at Oakwood High School.  It will then travel at 2 week intervals to other facilities including the VA Hospital, University of Dayton, and local high schools.

The goal of the SOS project is to create awareness and a visual voice for the subject of suicide, often referred to as a silent epidemic.  It is often through visual imagery that thoughts and feelings can be expressed where words cannot.  The exhibition will reach 20 locations to educate 20,000+ students, parents, teachers and the general public. 

K12 gallery & TEJAS is coordinating the creation of 30 visual images on fifteen 4' x 8' panels.  This unique assembly of artistic expression will attempt to show the varied components one might feel in contemplating this desperate act, as well as view from those who try to understand.  Our purpose is to expand the discussion so that those drawn to the darkness of isolation might find hope in light portrayed not only by the artists, but also through the discussion of resources available to help those affected ty the signs of despair.

Suicide is a public health crisis with over 20,000 victims in Ohio over the past 15 years, nearly triple the number of homicide victims.  In Ohio, suicide has claimed over 1,100 teens since 2,000.  Ohio mirrors the national average at nearly 13 deaths per 100,000.  In its 2011 Youth Risk Behavioral Report for Ohio, the Center for Disease Control reported that one in seven Ohio students said they had "seriously considered suicide" in the past 12 months.  Slightly more than one in seven had actually "made a plan" in that time. Additionally, one in eleven Ohio students reported "attempting suicide one or more times in the past 12 months", nearly 50 percent higher than the national average.  According to the Suicide Prevention Center, 80% of all people who die by suicide exhibit definite warning signs.  For youth, 82-85% actually told someone, most often a friend, that they were thinking about suicide.  Therefore, knowing the warning signs of suicide, knowing what to do to help a suicidal individual, and knowing where to go for additional help could stop the majority of suicides from actually happening.

Questions about this program can be addressed to:

Rebecca Sargent, TEJAS Director at rebecca@k12tejasgallery.org.

This is made possible through the generous support of the Physician's Charitible Trust Fund.