New Bedford has a suicide problem. That's the feeling of people at New Bedford Child and Family's Emergency Services Program.

Child and Family's Wendy Botelho and Pam Bolarinho spoke this week on Townsquare Sunday about the Emergency Services Program and the work they to connect with people struggling with depression, substance abuse, a serious illness or the loss of someone close and who may be contemplating suicide.

Child & Family’s Emergency Services crisis center operates 24 hours a day and provides care for people of all ages in need of emergency mental health evaluations. An experienced master’s level clinician is available seven days a week and there is always a psychiatrist on call. A clinician evaluates the client in crisis and arranges appropriate treatment.

Bolarinho and Botelho are organizing the Don't Lose Hope: 5K Walk and Run for Sunday, October 17 at Buttonwood Park in New Bedford. Their goal is to raise awareness about the problem of suicide. Registration is at 7:30 a.m. The event starts at 8:30.

Both are hoping the event will bring people together and spark a community conversation about suicide, and the need for all of us to help one another, especially when times are most troubling.

Research has shown that 46 percent of all people who die by suicide had a known mental health condition. Bolarinho and Botelho said it's the job of the Emergency Service Program to help patients and families recognize those conditions, and steer them toward healthy and more productive lives.

Townsquare Sunday is a weekly, public affairs program heard every Sunday morning on 1420 WBSM. The program features individuals and organizations working to make the SouthCoast a better place to live and work.

If you would like your organization featured on Townsquare Sunday, please e-mail the host at

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