My Ascension chronicles the story of Emma Benoit, a 16-year-old High School varsity cheerleader who was paralyzed by a suicide attempt, which propelled her on a mission to use her painful experience to help others find hope and stay alive.
Dr. Carrie Alexander-Albritton
Professor, Department of Counselor Education and College Student Personnel
Western Illinois University
William Ivarone, D.B.A, M.S. Ed
Director of Counseling Services
Jamie Haney, LISW
Vera French Community Health Center
Katie Krone, LPC
UnityPoint Health – Robert Young Center
A suicide attempt left 16-year-old varsity cheerleader, Emma Benoit, paralyzed, but propelled her on a mission to use her painful experience to help others find hope, and shine more light on the fact that 20 young people die every day by suicide in the United States. My Ascension chronicles Emma's inspiring journey and quest to walk again, as she works to bring Hope Squad, a school-based suicide prevention program, to Louisiana.
*Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Shining a light on this difficult topic can destigmatize suicide while revealing that there is help as well as hope for those at risk and their loved ones.
Suicide prevention experts agree that you don’t need to be a doctor or trained professional to recognize the signs of suicide in friends or loved ones.
Chasing the Dream takes a look at suicide, and the effect it has on family members and loved ones. Karen Heisig, with the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, and Deborah Duffek, a suicide prevention advocate, share their experience with losing someone to suicide.
The story of Abby Shaffer, a student who's personal struggles with depression led her to becoming and advocate for suicide prevention.
Creating a space of understanding, hope, and action for young people whose lives have been impacted by suicide, including those who have experienced a suicidal crisis and the loved ones, peers, and community who support them.
Emma Benoit became extremely passionate about suicide prevention after surviving a suicide attempt in 2017, the summer before her senior year in high school. At the time, she was a popular varsity cheerleader with a supportive family and lots of friends, but on the inside, she was filled with depression and anxiety and had never told a soul about it. Her attempt resulted in a spinal cord injury that left her paralyzed but helped her find faith and purpose; and propelled her on a mission to use her painful experience and miraculous recovery to help others.
Emma serves as an Ambassador for LivingWorks, the world’s leader in suicide prevention training. In December 2020, Emma was a featured guest on Jada Pinkett Smith’s hit show “Red Table Talk”, and she has also been featured on numerous news programs and podcasts.