Mental health advocate to offer perspectives at CMC
Mariangela “M” Abeo focuses on healing for those affected by trauma
Colorado Mountain College Vail Valley at Edwards will present on April 26 “Faces of Fortitude – Creating Safety within Trauma,” with Mariangela “M” Abeo, a mental health advocate, speaker, podcast host, producer and photographer.
Additionally, CMC campuses in Spring Valley, Breckenridge, Rifle and Salida will gather together for livestream presentations of Abeo’s talk. And for those who would like to access the talk at other locations, free livestream is available.
Abeo is the creator of “Faces of Fortitude,” which began as an online photography project and has developed into a movement of healing for those affected by suicide. Over 10 years ago, Abeo’s brother was lost to suicide and Abeo survived a suicide attempt. After seeing the effect the photos had, Abeo realized even more people could heal through photographs and opening up about the trauma of losing someone through suicide. The movement since has evolved into a way for Abeo to educate people as a mental health advocate and as someone who has experienced loss through suicide and as an attempted suicide survivor.
During Abeo’s presentation, the focus will be on understanding the impact of all kinds of trauma, including finding a safe place to process, creating a framework to examine, and discovering how to find hope and purpose moving forward.
Last year, the Colorado Department of Higher Education awarded Colorado Mountain College a Healthy Minds designation, recognizing CMC’s ongoing work in addressing the mental health needs of its students. Abeo’s event is a continuation of efforts in addressing behavioral health at the college and throughout the mountain communities it serves.
The “Faces of Fortitude” talk, with a Q&A to follow, will take place from 6-7:30 p.m. on April 26 in person and online at CMC Vail Valley at 150 Miller Ranch Road in Edwards. Abeo’s powerful black and white photography exhibit will accompany the presentation on campus and will be available for viewing both before and after the presentation. Both the in-person and livestream events are free and the public is welcome and encouraged to attend.