Arielle Tschinkel
June 05, 2019 7:34 am

On June 5th, 2018, fashion fans around the world mourned the loss of Kate Spade, who died by suicide at the age of 55. Immediately after her death, fans shared what Spade and her designs meant to them. It sparked a cultural conversation about the stigma surrounding mental health and how we can adequately help those in need or seek help if we’re struggling ourselves.

In the aftermath of Spade’s and chef Anthony Bourdain’s deaths within days of each other, suicide hotline calls spiked 25%, further proving that talking about mental health is vital. A few weeks after her death, Spade’s namesake brand announced they’d be donating more than $1 million toward mental health initiatives, hoping to help prevent further tragic deaths by suicide in the future.

On the one-year anniversary of her death, Kate Spade New York announced on its website that the Kate Spade Foundation is once again donating to mental health initiatives in her honor.

The Foundation will match donations up to $100,000 to The Jed Foundation, an organization that works to prevent suicide among teens and young adults. It will match donations from June 5th to June 12th, plus give grants to the Didi Hirsch Foundation and Fountain House, two other mental health organizations that work to support those struggling with mental illness.

We have a long way to go toward eradicating the stigma around mental illness for good. But supporting these organizations is a solid start.

We’re grateful to Kate Spade New York for honoring its founder in an important way. This initiative will help chip away at the misconceptions surrounding suicide and mental health.

If you or anyone you know are contemplating suicide, you can reach out to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, day or night, at 1-800-273-8255.

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