Send Silence Packing
What is Send Silence Packing®?
Send Silence Packing* is a nationally recognized traveling exhibition of donated backpacks representing college students lost to suicide each year. The program is designed to raise awareness about the incidence and impact of suicide, connect students to needed mental health resources, and inspire action for suicide prevention. At each exhibit of Send Silence Packing, backpacks are displayed in a high-traffic area of campus - like the campus quad - giving a visual representation of the scope of the problem and the number of victims.
Where do the backpacks come from?
Active Minds Inc. has collected and continues to collect backpacks and personal stories in memory or in honor of loved ones impacted by suicide. By displaying backpacks with personal stories, Send Silence Packing puts a "face" to lives lost to suicide and carries the message that preventing suicide is not just about improving statistics, but also about saving the lives of daughters, sons, brothers, sisters and friends across the nation. Contributions serve as a meaningful outlet for survivors' grief as well as a powerful way to raise awareness and work towards suicide prevention.
How effective is the display?
Since the inaugural display in 2008 on the National Mall in Washington, DC, Send Silence Packing has traveled to more than 140 cities in states across the country. Program evaluation data reveals that individuals leave the display wanting to learn more about mental health. Ninety-five percent of survey respondents rate the display as powerful or very powerful and 97 percent report that it is educational. Our evaluations also show that the majority of visitors tell three or more people about Send Silence Packing and many reach out to a friend in need or seek help for themselves as a result of seeing the program.