12th annual ‘RUOK? Day’ returns to help raise awareness on mental health

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Buckeye Campaign Against Suicide is hosting its annual “RUOK? Day” to raise awareness surrounding mental health and suicide prevention. Courtesy of 2022 Ruok Day, Ryan Watson

Buckeye Campaign Against Suicide, a student organization, is hosting its annual “RUOK? Day” to raise awareness surrounding mental health and suicide prevention Friday in the Performance Hall of the Ohio Union.

The Performance Hall will be split into five sections, all signifying one part of the acronym RUOK? — which stands for resources, university, student organizations, knowledge and asking difficult questions — according to an Ohio State news article .

Caroline Ingraham, BCAS president and fourth-year in communication, said students will interact and talk with both on- and off-campus organizations to help receive mental health resources at the event.

“We really strive to break the stigma around suicide prevention and make mental health resources accessible to everybody,” Ingraham said.

Ohio State’s Suicide Prevention Program advises BCAS and will be assisting with the event as well.

Laura Lewis, assistant director of OSUSPP, said the event is intended to raise awareness around the stigma around mental health, promote help-seeking, continue active mental health conversations and connect to resources to help support students.

Ingraham said she is hopeful the event can provide students with the right resources in order to face the sometimes difficult — but imperative — conversations regarding mental health.

“We really hope that students can find resources that would help themselves or a friend and learn how to ask those important questions like ‘Are you OK?” Ingraham said.

Lewis said the space is designed to welcome all students with experiences with mental health and suicide prevention in the past.

“The goal is really just to be promoting that campus culture of ‘care together’ where anyone who’s there recognizes that nobody should feel alone on our campus,” Lewis said. “The hope is that they will experience that in that space, get connected to the resources, maybe get some cool swag and walk out of there feeling more uplifted than when they walked in.”

Lewis said the event is designed for all attendees to learn more about issues concerning mental health and “what your connection to the cause is.” She said it’s everyone’s responsibility when it comes to suicide prevention and added how important the topic is to her personally.

“I don’t know that there’s anything more important in life than saving one,” Lewis said.

The event will be held from noon to 3 p.m.

If you or someone you know is having suicidal thoughts or ideation, there are resources available.

  • National Suicide Prevention 24/7 Lifeline: dial 988

  • Columbus Suicide 24/7 Hotline: 614-221-5445

  • The Trevor Project 24/7 LGBTQ Suicide Hotline: 866-488-7386

  • Ohio State Counseling and Consultation Services After Hours: 614-292-5766, option 2

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