Three Shasta County high school students have won statewide recognition for their video on suicide prevention.

Zach Osterday, Owen Castagnoli and Eddie DeAvila took an honorable mention for their 60-second video “The Missing Pieces” in the Directing Change Program and Student Film Contest this month. Osterday and Castagnoli are seniors at Shasta High School. DeAvila is a senior at University Prep. The students also were honored at the recent Shasta Suicide Prevention workgroup meeting.

The three friends worked together to create the public service announcement that promotes awareness, and encourages those who need help to contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.

“We really enjoyed making the film, even more than we thought we would,” said Castagnoli. In addition to satisfying all the contest requirements, the team also did independent research on suicide prevention by attending a Question, Persuade, Refer (QPR) Suicide Prevention training that provides a deeper understanding of suicide and how to help someone in crisis. “It was really eye-opening,” said Osterday.

Cash prizes up to $1000 are awarded to the winners, as well as funds for their schools to promote mental health and supportive resources.  This year’s categories included Mental Health Matters; Suicide Prevention; and Through the Lens of Culture.   Winning participants will be honored at a red carpet award ceremony at the California Center for the Arts in Escondido, California on May 11th

To view “The Missing Pieces” and other winning entries, visit the ‘Watch and Use Films’ page at www.DirectingChange.org.  For information on the contest or QPR training, please contact Amy Sturgeon at asturgeon@co.shasta.ca.us, or at 530-229-8426.

If you or someone you know is in crisis, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.