PUEBLO, Colo - The city of Pueblo is still grieving over the suicide of a thirteen year old Ariana DeHerrera who tragically took her own life last friday after facing what family members say was a constant barrage of cyber bullying on social media.
"What's going on in this community it needs to stop," said Ariana's mother Isarae Gutierrez.
Gutierrez says theres a fundamental disconnect between what teens say online and the effects it has on their victims. According to a 2012 study by onlinecollege.org forty-two percent of teens reported facing cyber bullying at one time or another. But for teens who are impacted the hardest, resources are limited.
Just last year Pueblo's suicide prevention center closed after state funding was discontinued -- leaving the city without a valuable tool for combating teen suicide. For parents and teens it may feel like there are few places to turn when cyber bullying occurs. But there is a fast and anonymous way to seek help that may save your kid's life.
safe2tell.org is a part of Safe-to-Tell-Colorado, a program that allows anyone to anonymously report concerns or threats of harassment or bullying. Its goal is to be an easy option for anyone who feels threatened to get in touch with help from law enforcement, schools and emergency services. The phone number for the organization is 1-877-542-SAFE.
Ariana's family will be holding a fundraiser on Saturday at Steel City Tavern in Pueblo from 2-7pm. They are looking to raise thirteen thousand dollars to help offset Ariana's funeral costs.