Benefit fashion show supports suicide awareness

On Sunday, January 8th, New Mexico high school student Anistacia Mia Aragon hosted a fashion show called “I Am;” “to illuminate and raise awareness of the mass suicide epidemic and use fashion to raise awareness, as well as empower those who attend,” according to the Menual School Web page. The show and charity event were held at the National Hispanic Cultural Center, with all ticket proceeds going to local suicide prevention programs in New Mexico.

Aragon is currently graduating from the Menaul School and this is her first time organizing an event like this. She is also a World Latina Teen USA titleholder with a platform to raise awareness about teen suicide, according to the event Web page.

“Unfortunately, because suicide was prominent in my life … I wanted others to recognize the signals of those around us who needed our help,” Aragon said.

The show included a live performance by local artist Josué Urruita and about 100 models from around the country, according to Aragon.

“(I’m glad to have a platform through which I can better understand the factors that can help identify and support those who are in a suicidal crisis… I definitely wanted the show to be authentic and inclusive of everyone who has been affected by suicide,” Aragon said .

Urrutia sang two original songs: “The Change” and “Run With I” from the discography of his band Los Domingueros, who participated in the performance due to his own experience with the subject.

“I immediately got involved when I knew why the event was being held because I struggled a lot with similar thoughts and troubles,” said Urrutia.

Urruita said he also participated to hopefully make a difference for others dealing with mental illness.

The free performance represented not only me, but others who are persevering through this epidemic of suicide and pushing past depression,” said Urrutia.

He emphasized the show’s theme, which was “creating hope through action,” and how that resonated with his band. Aragon also mentioned how the other contributors who made the show possible brought the theme to life.

“All the models and designers who represented the Anistacias catalog tried to convey that message during the show as well,” said Aragon.

Aragon hoped her show left attendees with a willingness to seek help when you need it and to be honest with others.

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“(I hope this show) is impactful, impactful, and only if you try and allow yourself to be open or vulnerable to trauma and pain and joy can the world be shown as meaningful and valuable,” Aragon said.

Weston Quintana is a freelance reporter for the Daily Lobo. He can be contacted at [email protected] or on Twitter @wes_jpg

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