Posted at: 03/18/2013 5:41 PM
By: Brianna Long
(ABC 6 NEWS) -- As Minnesota lawmakers are looking at ways to expand state suicide prevention programs; one local man is taking matters into his own hands.
Shadow Minto lives in Wasioja, and after seeing families in his community struggle after losing a loved ones to suicide, he decided to step in and do what he can do to help.
"Sometimes you feel like you see him in the store. You remember the laughs and the times you had together," said Minto.
As a Dodge County resident, he has seen other families in his community suffer the same loss he did. So he decided to do something about it. He attended a meeting last year for the newly formed suicide prevention task force. But that task force didn't last long. According to Dodge County Sheriff Jim Jensen, nothing happened with it after the first meeting.
"We're trying to figure out how we can resolve this issue. Because no one is immune to suicide," said Minto.
He says community involvement is important; so he recently finished up a free crisis management training module offered by the Minnesota Department of Human Services; using his own heartbreak to prevent it from happening to others.
"All it takes is one individual to get it going. There are people out there that care, but I don't think that they have the tools to move forward. That's what Joe and I, and as many community members as we can get, can come together to try to bring forth that type of information to people," said Minto.
Minto says he wants to use this training to reach out to people in his community who may be going through a hard time in their life, and try to help them. According to officials from the Minnesota Department of Human Services, the training is intended for mental health practitioners, but is available for anyone who is interested.