What Is Amitié?
Amitié (pronounced ah-mi-tay) is the French word for friendship, which is at the root of this organization. A group of friends who met in high school found themselves affected by a classmate’s suicide decades later. They decided that together they could do more to prevent others from having to learn what they now know.
You'll also see a butterfly image repeated on the pages of our site. Around the world, the butterfly symbolizes resurrection, endurance, change, hope, and/or life. We thought it a perfect representation.
Regina Graff, our organization President, has been giving suicide education seminars at New Orleans area high schools for 15 years. Her passion for reaching the hearts and minds of young people has helped fuel her countless volunteer hours.
Our discussions with young people take a different approach. We don’t give them statistics. We don’t just tell them to know the Suicide Prevention Hotline number. We talk to them as people. We get real. We share the raw truths of suicide. We talk about what happens afterward. We talk about how one single suicide affects so many people for the rest of their life. We talk about how an instant decision can be a permanent solution to a temporary problem. We talk about bullying, how not to be a bully, how to reach out to the lonely or different people around them. We talk about building real friendships among themselves, and developing a network of good people around them to share both the joys and the pains of life with.
Each member of Amitié has been touched in their life by suicide; either through personal experiences, a friend/family member being in crisis, or losing a friend/family member to suicide. We came together to make a real difference.