Suicide rates in young people are climbing at an alarming rate. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that the U.S. suicide rate has jumped 30 percent from 2000 to 2016, and suicide is now the second-leading cause of teen death. These statistics are the impetus for new suicide prevention documentary Stay Alive, which just received a prestigious Award of Merit from the IndieFEST Film Awards. The award is presented to Stay Alive‘s creative team, including executive producer Frank Kilpatrick, director Paul Emami, co-creator and host Dr. Mark Goulston, and panelists Kevin Hines and Rayko.
“In a time when suicide rates are skyrocketing, the message of Stay Alive is more important than ever before,” says Dr. Goulston, one of the country’s leading experts on suicide prevention and the co-creator of Stay Alive. “We created this documentary to bring hope and healing to at-risk populations and their loved ones, and we feel honored to be recognized for our work in suicide prevention.”
In winning an IndieFEST Film Award, the team behind Stay Alive joins the ranks of other high-profile winners of this internationally respected award, including Liam Neeson as the narrator of Love Thy Nature; A Path Appears documentary featuring George Clooney and Blake Lively; Radical Grace, executive produced by Susan Sarandon; a searing exposé Davids and Goliath by Peabody winner Leon Lee; and Touched with Fire starring Katie Holmes.
Stay Alive is moderated by Dr. Goulston and features suicide prevention advocate Rayko and suicide survivor Kevin Hines. In 2000, Hines jumped from the Golden Gate Bridge and lived. Stay Alive‘s message centers around the process of moving from despair—being unable to connect with others or find a reason to live—and on to healing. The raw and intimate personal disclosures, paired with proven approaches to help those who are suffering, make this program uniquely valuable and unlike any other you have ever seen.
“Recognizing the upturn in depression and the corresponding increase in suicide over the past ten years, my wife, Linda, and I simply wanted to produce Stay Alive as a personal contribution to help people who are in an unimaginably tough spot in life,” says co-creator and executive producer Frank Kilpatrick. “We are hopeful that this film documentary offers both a message of support as well as specific and useful resources and information. The combination of these three individuals together on screen creates a really compelling story. Dr. Goulston offers wisdom as a world-renowned suicide prevention expert; Kevin Hines is a survivor sharing his insider view of regret and redemption; and musician Rayko represents the creative community (particularly the music industry) that is so often affected by suicide.”
Stay Alive delivers messages of compassion and caring for those who are in deep despair, along with guidance for their families and friends who love them. And equally important, Stay Alive strives to spread awareness and remove the societal stigma surrounding suicide.
“To move the needle toward saving lives, we must help society recognize the true struggles of those at risk,” concludes Dr. Goulston. “Misunderstanding and judgment only further isolate a person who is suicidal. When we have more compassion and understanding, we can save more lives.”
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If you or someone you love needs help, call 911 or call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255)
About Dr. Mark Goulston:
Dr. Mark Goulston is the co-creator and moderator of the suicide prevention documentary Stay Alive. He is a former UCLA professor of psychiatry, FBI hostage negotiation trainer, suicide and violence prevention expert, and one of the world’s foremost experts on listening. He is the author of the best-selling “Just Listen”: Discover the Secret to Getting Through to Absolutely Anyone, which became the top book on listening in the world. Dr. Goulston’s HBR IdeaCast episode Become a Better Listener is ranked number one of all their podcasts. He is also host of the My Wakeup Call podcast. Dr. Goulston is on the Board of Advisors for HealthCorps and is the recipient of the Dr. W. Mark Warfel Resilient Heart Award.
About the Producers:
Producers Frank Kilpatrick and Linda Kilpatrick, along with director Paul Emami, partnered with Mark, Kevin, and Rayko to create Stay Alive to express the purpose of helping you or someone you love to find their way out of despair.
About Stay Alive (#StayAliveNow):
Stay Alive is a 75-minute video/podcast documentary serving at-risk populations. The program’s two sections, Understanding and Helping, deliver messages of education, compassion, and caring for those who are in deep despair, along with guidance for their families and friends who love them. Stay Alive is recommended for individuals, families, schools, communities, social services, and churches—anywhere there is a need.
The IndieFEST Film Awards recognize film, television, videography, and new media professionals who demonstrate exceptional achievement in craft and creativity, and those who produce standout entertainment or contribute to profound social change. Entries are judged by highly qualified professionals in the film and television industry.