Non-profit organization uses roller skating to shed light on suicide awareness

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MCADOO, SCHUYLKILL COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — A local non-profit used a fun-filled event to roll out an important message Saturday night. The group is shedding light on suicide awareness.

Around and around people went, skating at the Strand Roller Rink in McAdoo.

“A lot of these kids are having such a good time and it makes them forget some of the other stuff they have going on,” Kaylee Gilbert said.

The Link, a non-profit organization held this skating event to break a different cycle, stigmas around suicide.

“I would like to push that there is awareness and there are people out there that will help,” The Link founder Ann Marie Calalbrese said.

The Link holds different events like this throughout the year. Their goal is to use these fun events to draw out healthy conversations on this heavy subject. The Link had people throw on their skates for this annual event to let people know that they are never alone, even in dark times.

“I don’t want to see people suffer. And I want everybody of every age to know that there’s always somebody there to listen,” Calalbrese said.

The Link had help from the Pottsville roller derby group, Scream Queens, to add to the fun and show people one outlet they use.

“If you’re stressed or having a bad day or whatever, just come to roller derby practice. Not only can you guys beat on each other, but you also have an amazing support group there,” Scream Queens member Lollirot said.

Connecting people of all ages and letting Carbon and Schuylkill County residents know these programs are there for anyone who has been impacted by suicide.

“Every event that I do, someone comes up to me, they might pull me into the corner and they’re like ‘thank you for what you do because you saved so-and-so’s life’ and that is why I do this,” Calalbrese said.

All the proceeds from Saturday’s event benefit suicide awareness and prevention in both Schuylkill and Carbon County.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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