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Bi-county walk seeks to raise mental health awareness

Appeal-Democrat - 9/25/2023

Sep. 25—Sutter-Yuba Behavioral Health and its Prevention and Early Intervention team will be hosting its first bi-county walk across the Twin Cities Memorial Bridge on Saturday.

The inaugural event, called "Bridging Hope: A Walk for Suicide Awareness and Prevention," is aiming to reduce the stigma of mental illness by bringing people together and strengthening positive community relationships, organizers said.

Participation in this event is free and open to the public. Registration will begin at 8 a.m. at Veterans Memorial Park in Marysville, located at 715 5th St. An opening ceremony will start at 9 a.m. with the official walk to commence immediately after.

The walk will proceed from Marysville'sVeterans Park straight up over the Twin Cities Memorial Bridge, also referred to as 5th Street Bridge, and back for an approximate 1.4-mile journey.

Mental illnesses are common in the United States, and the National Institute of Mental Health estimates that more than one in five U.S. adults live with a mental illness. In 2021, that estimate equates to approximately 57.8 million people and of that number only 47.2% received mental health services within that same year. For adolescents between the ages of 13 and 18 in the U.S., the prevalence of any mental disorder rises to nearly 50%.

Mental illnesses can include many different conditions that vary in degree of severity, ranging from mild to moderate to severe. Two broad categories can be used to describe these conditions: Any Mental Illness (AMI) and Serious Mental Illness (SMI). AMI encompasses all recognized mental illnesses while SMI is a smaller and more severe subset of AMI.

According to the American Psychiatric Association, more than half of those with any mental illness won't receive help for their disorders. Some of the common reasons people avoid or delay seeking treatment are due to concerns about being treated differently or fears of losing their jobs and livelihood. This perceived or anticipated stigma in regards to people with mental illness has remained problematic.

Saturday's event is meant to show solidarity in the community in support and awareness of those with mental health issues. Resources from partner agencies from both Sutter and Yuba counties, along with mental health professionals, will also be available.

To pre-register, visit For more information about the event, contact the Prevention and Early Intervention team via email at


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