Foundation to sponsor seminar on teen suicide prevention Monday in Olathe

Teens and their parents are invited to attend a seminar Monday evening that will focus on ways to help fight teen depression and prevent suicide.

The gathering, “Talk Listen Act: Understanding Suicide & How to Stop It,” is sponsored by the Tom Karlin Foundation and designed for teens, parents, educators, social workers and spiritual leaders, according to a news release from the organization. It will address the recent incidents of teen suicide in the area — including two students from Olathe Northwest High School in November — and teach ways to understand warning signs and offer hope to those who are suffering.

Joe Karlin, co-founder of the foundation, lost his 16-year-old son, Tom, to suicide in November 2011.

“Our family developed this foundation in Tom’s memory, as we were compelled to raise awareness of teen depression and suicide and help others prevent teen suicide,” Karlin said. “While we still mourn the loss of Tom, we are inspired to help others and make an impact in our community.”

The gathering will be at 7 p.m. at Heartland Community Church, 12175 S. Strang Line Road in Olathe. For more information, go to the foundation's Facebook page.

Judy L. Thomas, jthomas@kcstar.com