Backpacks Fill Campus Quad at ESU for Suicide Awareness

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EAST STROUDSBURG, Pa. -- Amanda Long is a freshman at East Stroudsburg University.  On her way to class, she noticed a lot of backpacks scattered on the campus quad.

She got a bit emotional when she realized the display was for suicide awareness.

"It's actually very sad. I am actually trying not to cry right now," said Long.

As part of National Suicide Awareness Month, ESU is partnering with an organization called "Send Silence Packing."

The traveling exhibit brings awareness to mental health issues.

"We have about 1,100 backpacks representing the lives that were lost to suicide each year. We want to create awareness that suicide is preventable, and there is help available. A big component of this is to create awareness," said Raquel Sosa, Active Minds chapter president.

All of these backpacks were donated by family members who lost someone to suicide. Some of them even have stories of how they died.

"I just kinda looked at the first one and it actually had my name on it. It was creepy to me, but I think this is important," said ESU junior Andy Lopez.

Lopez thinks this exhibit is a good way to show students there is help out there.

"Yeah, I think it's really awesome that they are doing this. I think more people should be out here looking at this right now," said Lopez.

Another event regarding mental health and suicide awareness is scheduled for Tuesday at 6 p.m.

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