NEWBURYPORT – Newburyport Youth Services and the Beacon Coalition — a citywide partnership supporting young people — will host a community gathering with the Samaritans of Merrimack Valley on Thursday from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at the former Brown School gym.

The gathering is open to anyone, including youths, looking for support, information or guidance in the wake of a recent loss to suicide in the community.

The event is focused on providing tools on how to talk with children about the suicide death of a friend or someone they may have known. Those at the gathering also will focus on what members of the community might need to know about suicide prevention.

There will be a brief presentation with many opportunities for questions and discussion.

The event will be led by Larry Berkowitz of Riverside Counseling Services and Deborah Helms of the Samaritans of Merrimack Valley. 

In addition, the Beacon Coalition will a host a mental health task force public forum Feb. 12 at 7 p.m. More information will be announced soon.

This forum will be designed to bring the community together to look at what support is available and to identify needs and possible ideas to promote positive mental health among children and families.

For more information, contact 978-465-4434 or


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