NORFOLK, Va. -- Events are being held this weekend to raise awareness for suicide prevention in Norfolk and Virginia Beach.

In Norfolk, this is the second week of "Mentally Healthy Norfolk" month. A big event this coming weekend is the "Out of the Darkness Community Walk" in Norfolk on Saturday, October 14, beginning at 10 a.m. at MacArthur Center. There will also be a second Out of the Darkness walk on Sunday, October 15 at the Virginia Beach Sportsplex at 3:30 p.m.

These walks are important to raise funds for suicide prevention, also increases awareness of this important public health issue. Approximately 44,000 Americans die by suicide every year, including 1,100 in Virginia.

Money raised for the events will fund programs like the Talk Saves Lives presentations that took place in Norfolk last Monday, with over 100 people receiving training in five locations across the city. The money also funds research and advocacy to ensure that mental health issues continue to receive attention at all levels of government.