Posted at: 09/07/2012 6:13 PM
Updated at: 09/07/2012 7:14 PM
By: Katie Eldred
Ehmke Fundraiser Raises more than $100,000
After losing their daughter to suicide, the family of 13 year old Rachel Ehmke have put in place a memorial fund. They are hoping this fund may prevent any more teens from taking their own lives.
Rachel Ehmke took her own life back in April after her parents say she was bullied. The community has come out in full force through walks, t-shirts, and bracelets to support the Ehmke family.
Now the family is using the money raised from those events to educate the community on the issue of bullying and suicide prevention.
"Well there's been some different fundraisers surrounding this issue and their initial contribution was 100,000 dollars," said Al DeBoer.
The Ehmke's have been working with DeBoer of the Rochester Area Foundation to set up the memorial fund.
"They want to reach out to others because they realize this is not a onetime thing, it happens all too often," said DeBoer.
Mayo Clinic's Dr. Peter Jensen says bullying has long term effects.
"Depression, anxiety, worries about going to school, withdrawal, and even suicidal thoughts."
He says the most effective way to deal with bullying is to set a new environment in our schools.
"That this is not a place we can do that, this is a place to learn and bullying cannot be tolerated here."
The Ehmke's want to use the memorial fund to support programs that will go into area schools. The hope that no other family will have to go through what they have.
"If we can reach just one kid and prevent that kind of tragedy that occurred in the Ehmke family, then it will be worth it," said DeBoer.
Anyone that would like to donate to the Rachel Ehmke memorial fund can do so by contacting the Rochester Area Foundation.