Estoy Aqui Values
Estoy Aqui means “I am here” in Spanish
In other words, Estoy Aquí para Ti, Tú Estás Aquí para Mí – I Am Here for You, You are Here for Me. If I had Estoy Aqui when I was younger, it could have prevented a lot of guilt and shame from settling in my heart. You see, I thought all of this was my fault. If I had Estoy Aqui, my suicidal thoughts could have been validated along with my humanity, and I would have understood that there are multiple dimensions to mental health and healing.
Estoy Aqui means I am Curious because I Care
Suicide is the language of pain. We can translate this language by listening to understand and by continuing to ask questions. In a community, we can find ways to compassionately interrupt feelings that keep us isolated and, hopefully, get to define our own experiences.
Estoy Aqui means Sigo Aqui, I Am Still Here
Estoy Aqui is also my declaration to the world that symbolizes a deeper affirmation: Sigo Aquí, I Am Still Here. I have resisted empowering my suicidal thoughts because I belong to a community I know will be available to me with the knowledge and skills to sustain me.
At Estoy Aqui, we stand for these values
Estoy Aqui defines suicide as an injustice-based act and considers mental health issues to be a rational and protective response against oppression. For suicide to be eliminated, we must dig deeper and talk about the actual root causes behind pain and trauma.
Estoy Aqui promotes the value of interdependence and highlights the importance of curiosity, validation, and consent when supporting others. We look beyond the idea of individual responsibility and resilience to hold systems accountable, not just ourselves, for our wellness.
Estoy Aqui challenges suicide prevention by asking, what skills and systems exist in Latine and Black communities that can protect them from suicide? Alternative systems such as barbershops, bodegas, and laundromats are recognized as potential sources of mental health support.
Estoy Aqui believes that the knowledge gained from painful and/or traumatic experiences is a valid data source. The sharing of these stories can ultimately protect communities of color against suicide and mental health issues.