By Dan Rascon | KSL TV
August 12, 2021
SALT LAKE CITY — A new campaign in the fight against teen suicide is doing something creators say hasn’t been done before. They are running a series of animated stories on suicide prevention they call “My Life is Worth Living.”
According to the latest statistics, suicide is the No. 1 cause of death for 10- to 24-year-olds in Utah.
The project will launch on Aug. 18 over social media. It will include five stories and 20 episodes. Each episode will air every week until the end of the year.
“There’s a whole community of people that love (our youth), and that want to support them. That is what I think is the most rewarding thing for this,” said Julie Cook, who is behind the project.
Cook and her husband are the founders of the Utah County-based company DoTERRA. The two started a foundation called the Cook Center for Human Connection as a way to help prevent teen suicides by providing resources and other information to youth and parents.
“Whether you’re the parent, whether you’re the coach, whether you’re the neighbor, whether you’re the aunt, whoever you are, if we are all on the lookout for those in our life who might be struggling, then we might be the answer,” said Cook.
The Cook Center has teamed up with Terry Thoren from Wonder Media an organization that addresses trauma through animation. He is also behind the Rugrats, and The Wild Thornberry’s.
“There is hope. They just have to fight that negative voice that they have in their head and we actually brought that voice to life in animation,” said Thoren to KSL. Thoren believes this animation series is the way to truly connect with teens in this day and age.
“They love storytelling, and they love characters. And we know that we can embed in our stories in our characters, a way for them, not only to articulate what their problems are but also show them a place where they can get help,” said Thoren.
A link to the animated series can be found by going to mylifeisworthliving.org.