Loading
Search
NEWS STORIES

COPE Coalition creates coaster campaign for suicide preventionSubmitted: 03/14/2019
Dakota Sherek
Dakota Sherek
Senior Reporter / Anchor
dsherek@wjfw.com

COPE Coalition creates coaster campaign for suicide prevention
RHINELANDER - Suicide ranks among the top ten causes of death in America according to the CDC. In parts of the Northwoods, the suicide rate is well above the national average. Vilas County's suicide rate nearly double the national average, and Oneida County is not too far behind.

A group with representatives from three area counties decided to ask bar owners and bartenders to spread awareness, and possibly help save a life.


"We are hoping to reach a population that needs help," said Ascension Koller Behavioral Health clinical social worker and mental health specialist Heidi Pritzl.

Pritzl says that for men aged 45 to 54, suicide is the eighth leading cause of death. So, the Northwoods Tri-County COPE (Community, Outreach, Prevention and Education) coalition considered ways to change that statistic.

"Different approaches to reaching out and breaking stigma, and getting the education out there," said Pritzl.

One of the solutions they came up with is the coaster campaign. The idea behind the project is that when people walk into participating bars they'll see special coasters. The coasters include important information like national and tri-county crisis line phone numbers and even a website, headsupguys.org, which can help people battling depression or anxiety.

"I think it's great," said Oneida County Assistant Veterans Service Officer Jason Dailey, who is also a partner with COPE. "It's a good conversation starter, it's a resource." 

A resource that bars and restaurants across the Northwoods, like Bucketheads Sports Bar and Grill in Rhinelander, can easily use.

"We're happy to put them out, and we're always happy to help any local cause of campaign," said Bucketheads manager Lyndon Lampe. "If it helps one person then it's worth us trying it out."

Dailey hopes the campaign will help veterans and others who struggle with mental health.

"To get the word out there that this is an issue in our communities, that there are resources out there to help, that there's options other than suicide," said Dailey. 

The campaign is still very new. But Pritzl hopes the coasters will, at the very least, start a conversation in the community.

"Any way we can bring education to our community would be great," said Pritzl. 

Pritzl says tavern league leaders in Vilas, Oneida, and Forest Counties were contacted and all businesses within those leagues will have the coasters.

To contact the Tri-county crisis line call 888-299-1188 or for the national line call 1-800-273-TALK.




Text Size: + Increase | Decrease -
| Print Story | Email Story
Sponsored in part by HodagSports.com





 IN OTHER NEWS

RHINELANDER - A man died near the entrance of Nicolet College in Rhinelander on Thursday afternoon.

Neither the campus nor the public were in danger, according to the Oneida Co. Sheriff's Office. Due to the circumstances of the man's death, Newswatch 12 is not releasing more information, but there appears to be nothing suspicious about the death.

Police got a report at 3:55 p.m. about a man lying face down near the entry drive to Nicolet College. Emergency responders took him to St. Mary's Hospital, but he died.

The Oneida Co. Sheriff's Office, Rhinelander Fire Department, Pelican First Responders, and Oneida Co. Medical Examiner's Office were involved in the response.

+ Read More

Play Video

MINOCQUA - Mixed in with a sea of cakes, brownies, and muffins, Sue Loeffler thought her cookies stood out.

"Yeah, yeah, it was a real production," Loeffler said of her work.

Loeffler spent the better part of Wednesday making 91 cookies for a bake sale, which started Thursday, knowing her role was an important one in drawing a crowd.

"Us Methodist women are really good bakers, so we have this reputation in town for good food," Loeffler said.

+ Read More

RHINELANDER - People living in Rhinelander may notice discolored water at different points throughout the month of June.  The city plans to flush its hydrants over a four-to-six-week stretch.

The routine flushing helps clear out iron deposits in water lines and make sure hydrants are working properly.

+ Read More

Play Video

ELCHO - Wisconsin counts "tipped" employees as some of its lowest-income workers.

Bartenders, waiters, and valets are rarely among the wealthy, but those workers could be getting a new tax break soon.

Right now, workers are supposed to pay taxes on the cash tips they get from customers.

A bill in the state legislature would make Wisconsin the first state to stop taxing them on that income.

At Koni K's restaurant in Elcho, servers make three dollars an hour. They need tips to survive.

+ Read More

Play Video

ARBOR VITAE - Do you know where your food comes from? Kindergarteners at Arbor Vitae-Woodruff elementary do. They have been growing their own fruits and vegetables all year. On Thursday, their work culminated in a final celebration as part of the first-ever Wisconsin School Garden Day. 

Each kindergartner was partnered with a fifth grader to help them with planting and weeding.

Organizer Adriane Morabito said it is important for young people to know where their food comes from.

"It teaches them important skills like empathy, compassionate, and kindness," said Morabito. "It also helps them eat healthy."

+ Read More

Play Video

RHINELANDER -

The Oneida County Beekeepers Association promotes beekeeping in the Northwoods. 

It does its part to save the bees, and wants to encourage to do the same. It works to recruit new beekeepers, as well as teach people the importance of honeybees in our everyday lives.

"Bees are essential for our food supply," said Oneida County Beekeepers Association member, John Bigley. "If we lose the bees, we lose most of the food supply. So, we got to keep them healthy. We have to ensure that they are pollinating not only the flowers, but the fruit trees and vegetable gardens."

The organization is holding a class on June 1st for anyone who is interested in learning how to become a beekeeper. 

It's also an advanced class for beekeepers to learn more about bee tips and tricks. 

It will be held at Hansen's Honey Farm.


+ Read More

Play Video

RHINELANDER - Grow North is a corporation working toward a stronger economy in the Northwoods. Their annual meeting Thursday focused on housing.

Executive Director of Regional and Economic Development at Nicolet College Sandy Bishop said housing is the number one issue for local business-owners.

"Part of what we're learning about is the need for housing across the region and then also looking at what kinds of incentives and resources are available that can be tapped into," said Bishop.

+ Read More
+ More General News
Search: