Project Semicolon was started by Amy Bleuel in 2013. It is an American mental health non-profit organization that functions as an anti suicide initiative. They are located in Green Bay, Wisconsin.
“Within the belief that suicide is generally preventable, the mission of project semicolon is to reduce the incidents of suicide in the world through connected community and greater access to information and resources. We believe that suicide prevention is the collective responsibility of each and every person on the planet.”
According to their site, 75% of suicide victims share their plan. Further, 90% of suicides are diagnosed and treatable. Thus, suicide prevention is their primary motto. Additionally, they have helped more than 5.2 million people since then.
“Life is like a semi colon. A semi colon is used when a sentence could have been ended but it wasn’t.”
About the founder
Amy Bluele started this project as a tribute to her father who died by suicide in 2003. She settled on a powerful symbol to help express the hope when life is saved – the semicolon ( ; ).
It is the symbol of persistence that comes from struggling with mental illness.
Therefore, she started the semi colon project as a faith based non-profit organisation. This was an amazing step which she took to help others, despite all the struggles that she faced.
As Robin Williams put it,
“Saddest people always try their hardest to make others happy because they know whats it’s like to feel absolutely worthless and they don’t want anyone else to feel that.”
Amy knew what it feels like and how bad the situation can be for those facing depression, other mental illnesses and disorders, thereby having suicidal thoughts.
Amy’s own battle with depression began at an early age when she was 8 years old. Further, she was struggling with anxiety and self-harm. In fact, she also lived through sexual assault and abuse growing up. Most of her work was centred on raising awareness of mental illness and suicide prevention.
However, quite ironically, she was there for everyone but perhaps there was no one for her. The angel who helped others, motivated others, succumbed to her troubles and took her life on 23rd March 2017. We can never thank her enough for her contribution. The way she changed lives of many in US and all around the world, is beyond remarkable.
Thank you for your work Amy, May your soul rest in peace as you are one of those shining stars that remind us that there is hope even in our darkest hours.
Project semi colon inspired many. People around the world came up with stories of their battle with depression and suicidal thoughts. Those who recovered and also those who support this project get semi colon inked on different parts of their body.
This shows that they support the movement and they are warriors. Project semi colon exists to encourage, love and inspire.
“My sister and I got matching tattoos last year – a combination of a semicolon and a butterfly with our fingerprints as the wings, representing both of our struggles with depression as well as many people we both know who have various mental health problems.” — Rachel Dillon
Those supporting project semi colon, don’t tell you to ‘just get over it’. Instead, they help you to get through it. We need more projects like this. We need initiatives that help people get through struggles. Additionally, we need more people like Amy who are as motived and are willing to work for others. Someone to inspire, to encourage, to tell people that this is not the end. Project semicolon is a success and it inspires people all over the world.
“One day, one girl told her story that story changed the world. Just don’t let them forget why I was here because that’s what’s important.” – Amy Bleuel
Edited by Preetika Dubey