February 11, 2020 – BENS Hope awarded the 2020 Arthur Virtue Community Spirit Award from Platteville Regional Chamber
August 22, 2019 – BENS Hope represented at 2019 Resource Fair and Backpack Giveaway hosted by Grant County Coordinated Services Team, in Lancaster, WI
July 13-14, 2019 – BENS Hope represented at ASSIST Training at Center for Suicide Awareness, Kaukauna WI
March 14, 2019 – BENS Hope featured in Mount Horeb Mail article titled, “A glimmer of light, The family of Ben Cullen brings a message of hope to Mount Horeb”
November 13, 2018 – Community SOS
November 7, 2018 – One PM classroom presentation at Mt. Horeb High School (approximately 26 students) Suicide Awareness/Prevention
November 6, 2018 – Three AM classroom presentations at Mt. Horeb High School (approximately 26 students each class) Suicide Awareness/Prevention
November 3, 2018 – Grief Conference Shalom Center Dubuque Iowa – Speakers (Chord of 3 Strands – Getting through marriage after loss) also facilitators at round table group (Suicide Loss).
October 9, 2018 – Community SOS
September 29, 2018 – Speakers at Mental Health Matters Lafayette County 1st annual event
September 22, 2018 – BENS HOPE 4th Annual 5K/2M
September 11, 2018 – Community SOS 6:30-8
August 28 & 29, 2018 – Patti and Terry Cullen thank UW-Platteville for the invite to speak with some amazing young leaders on campus! They spoke to 150 RAs on August 28th and an additional 120 Dining Services students on August 29th. While sharing their story of Ben’s suicide is agonizing, they feel it needs to be heard so others understand the finality and aftermath of suicide. They are thankful for the opportunity to speak to raise Suicide Awareness and pray the tools and resources provided aid in Suicide Prevention, offer hope, and save lives.
August 28, 2018 conversation with Mary Grimm Muscoda requesting update on Coalition efforts and request for us to speak in Muscoda. Sent materials to her.
August 27, 2018 – Meeting at UWP with Jason Artz and Diedre Dalsing regarding future efforts with Campus SOS.
August 22, 2018 – Conversation with Justin Erickson 10 minutes
August 20, 2018 – Talked with Justin Erickson 30 minutes regarding presentation request for Terry and me to speak at Lafayette County Coalition event September 29, 2018.
August 15, 2018 – Talked with Steven Salerno 20 minutes
August 14, 2018 – Community SOS
August 14, 2018 – One person can make a difference and this was proven true after Mt. Horeb experienced 3 suicide losses in a 2 week period. Mound City Bank employee Mandy McWilliams, wanted to help her community and asked for insight from her coworker and friend Patti Cullen and husband Terry who lost their son Benjamin to suicide 11-11-14. Mandy also reached out to Mt. Horeb Superintendent Steve Salerno. After Steve and Patti exchanged several phone calls, three weeks later the Cullen’s stood in front of the Mt. Horeb High School auditorium speaking to 388 faculty and staff sharing their inspiring story one of tragedy but also of hope.
August 13, 2018 – Phone conversation with Steve Salerno from Mt. Horeb
August 10, 2018 – Talked with Carmen from Allay for 30 minutes regarding outreach efforts for those struggling.
August 3, 2018 – Returned call to Caleb regarding his Ex. Listened & provided contacts in area and other resources over 1 hour and 13 minute conversation.
July 30, 2018 – Phone conversation with Steve Salerno from Mt. Horeb
July 24, 2018 – Phone conversation with Steve Salerno from Mt. Horeb
July 18, 2018 Email from Mandy McWilliams: Patti, There have been 3 deaths by suicide in Mount Horeb over the past 2 weeks. Ages 19, 21 and 10. I find myself feeling so helpless and experiencing a range of emotions thinking to myself what can I do to help as one person in a community of 7000+. Would you be open to me sharing your name/story/contact information to our Superintendent Steve and also to my neighbor Tanya who serves on the Mount Horeb Mental Health Coalition? Feel free to call me if easier. Thanks, Mandy
July 12, 2018 – Community SOS
June 12, 2018 – Community SOS
May 17, 2018 – Terry and I took Stacy from SOS to dinner to celebrate her graduation from UWP.
May 16, 2018 – Lancaster Schools – presentation 12:30-1:15 – 1 class
May 16, 2018 – Potosi Schools Healthy Connections Fair – 8:50-11:45 – 3 breakout sessions
May 14, 2018 – Lancaster School Presentations – 8-9:30 -2 classes
May 9, 2018 – Speaking engagement at Reds Supperclub with Funeral Directors Association/Nathan Popp invite
May 8, 2018 – Community SOS
May 2, 2018 – Another meeting with Jake Riniker regarding BENS HOPE 501C3 (he stopped by bank)
April 26, 2018 – UWP Campus SOS
April 26, 2018 – Common Barriers to School Suicide Prevention 11-12 AM (took lunch hour to listen at work)
April 23 2018 – Meeting with Jake Riniker for BENS HOPE 501C3
April 19, 2018 – Pat & Terry to WI Bank & Trust for photo with United Way & $1000 donation to BENS HOPE
April 13, 2018 – Platteville Middle School 8th Grade Presentations 8:10-9:50 3 classes
April 12, 2018 – Platteville Middle School 8th Grade Presentation – 12:-12:50 1 class
April 10, 2018 – Community SOS
April 6, 2018 – Speaking Engagement at UWP/per invite Karen Bradley – Clarity Clinic Platteville – Theme was Chord of 3 Strands
Clarity Clinic 1 Clarity Clinic 2
April 5, 2018 – UWP Campus SOS
March 28, 2018 – Met with Robin Cosgrove at Badger Coffee 8:30 – 10
March 26, 2018 – BENS HOPE meeting with Sarah White
March 22, 2018 – Met at Badger Coffee with Tom – facilitator of 5 County Coalition
March 15, 2018 – UWP Campus SOS
March 15, 2018 – CESA 3 meeting at Folklore Village (5 counties represented) Met Robin Cosgrove!
March 13, 2018 – Community SOS
March 11, 2018 – Met in our home with Reichling family (1:30-5) who lost their son to suicide last month.
March 1, 2018 – UWP Campus SOS 5 – 6:30
February 26, 2018 – BENS HOPE meeting with Sarah White – brochures/business cards
February 23, 2018 – Pat – meeting with sub-committee volunteers selected at January 22, 2018 CESA 3- Grant County mapping meeting including Missy Kliebenstein, Paula Schoenberg, Jodi Moen and Mary of family ties. We discussed options for education/promoting various services. Ideas will be presented at the upcoming meeting at Folklore Village in Dodgeville March 15.
February 15, 2018 – UWP Campus SOS
February 13, 2018 – Community SOS
February 8, 2018 – Apt at Cuba City Pharmacy; scheduled apt with Carmen Kosicek MSN, APNP, PMHNP-BC the CEO of Alay Health Team. Terry and I experienced “mock” apt through Skype. Carmen explained process whereby a Nurse Practitioner meets with client to assess them asking an array of questions, then Carmen joins them and furthers assessment with additional questions. Upon completion of evaluation, Carmen puts order for meds into pharmacy for client to pick up on their way out. Carmen shared that meds do not have to be permanent. In some instances the serotonin in the brain needs to be reset, (i.e. if client endured a traumatic event) and meds may be prescribed for six or twelve months or if the client is dealing with an addiction. Carmen shared how some meds people are taking are outdated by 15 years and that there are newer meds offered. It is also possible to detect within four days if a prescription will work versus the weeks/months it takes for people now. Injections are an option also for those who forget to take their meds. While meds are part of this, Alay works to get clients set up with counseling in the area for additional support. Clients can be seen within 72 hours versus weeks or months as some struggling find themselves waiting today.
February 1, 2018 – UWP Campus SOS
January 22, 2018 – Accepted invite from Jodi Moen, LPC Associate Counselor at UWP to attend Grant County asset-mapping meeting at CESA 3 from 2 – 4 PM. Mom, Terry and I went to represent BENS HOPE. Meeting is to set a direction and work to make important changes for improving community mental and behavioral health. This work is part of a Medical College of Wisconsin Advancing a Healthier Community grant project to improve access to support and services.
January 11, 2018 – Pat – Mom’s Winter Circle Class – Online/Skype with 12 other moms who’ve lost their kids to suicide to share stories, offer support and learn techniques for healing.
January 9, 2018 – Community SOS
December 14, 2017 – Pat – Mom’s Winter Circle Class – Online/Skype with 12 other moms who’ve lost their kids to suicide to share stories, offer support and learn techniques for healing.
December 12, 2017 – Community SOS
December 7, 2017 – UWP Campus SOS 5 – 6:30
November 16, 2017 – Accepted invite to PHS Swim Banquet – Received Award/Donation for efforts through BENS HOPE from girls swim team and Coach
November 16, 2017 – UWP Campus SOS 5 – 6:30
November 14, 2017 – Community SOS
November 8, 2017 – Gunderson Clinic presentation – 610 E Taylor St., Prairie Du Chien, WI – 40 – 50 attendees joined us at Gunderson for evening presentation. Range in audience, including counselors, students and adults who’ve attempted. Questions aken upon our wrap up; additional conversations, comments, inquiries following adjournment of event; overwhelmed by love, support and comments for participants and hosts. Kristin was contact, did awesome job with others from Gunderson who put this event on.
November 2, 2017 – UWP Campus SOS 5 – 6:30
October 19, 2017 – UWP Campus SOS 5-6:30
October 19, 2017 – Presentation at CESA 3 to peer group of 14 counselors, hosted by Deb Goold from CESA 3
October 17, 2017 – Staff of UW-Platteville University Counseling Services (UCS) presented the Mental Health Matters Award to Patti and Terry Cullen. University Counseling Services created this award to recognize the achievements of individuals and organizations who have worked to reduce stigma and shame associated with mental illness while improving understanding, awareness, service provision and the general mental health of students at UW-Platteville. UCS has seen a 24% increase in service use this fall as compared to fall of 2016. Services are available to UW-Platteville students and counseling appointments can be made by calling 608-342-1891.
Mental Health Matters Award
October 10, 2017 – Community SOS
October 6 & 7, 2017 – Terry and I accepted invite to partake in Healing Grief Conference at Shalom Center in Dubuque Iowa and will be presenters during afternoon workshop.
October 5, 2017 – UWP Campus SOS 5 – 6:30
September 23, 2017 – BENS HOPE 3rd Annual 5K/2M event with over 400 registered attendees!!
September 14, 2017 – Terry and I accepted invite to speak at Open Forum at UWP Campus after counseling department provided introductions and shared Beyond the Silence Video. Q&A followed.
September 12, 2017 – Community SOS
September 4, 2017 – I decided to join an online class hosted by Elaine, a woman from Georgia mentioned by AFSP. This group is exclusive to mom’s who have lost their child to suicide. I’ve felt for the past months the desire to seek other mothers who can identify and know the pain and anguish of losing a child to suicide. Praying, hopeful and excited to learn tools and techniques to move forward in life and find true joy again. Also to manage the guilt, shame and feelings associated with the stigma that come from “mind chatter” as our instructor calls it. Keeping the faith that as I move forward on my journey, I can share what I’ve learned with others through workshops and events to bring them hope and out of darkness and sadness that can spiral at any given moment. (Total of 4 classes) Also spoke on phone to instructor about having her mentor me for this purpose once the class sessions wrap up.
August 29, 2017 – Two presentations at UWP as requested by Crystal who oversees students; 120 students in Dining Services who will interact with additional 550 students in dining services, but did presentation in two back to back sessions. Shared story of Ben’s suicide, our journey since; went through Safety & Crisis Plan, handed out bracelets and explained resources and informed them of Campus SOS.
August 28, 2017 – Presentation at UWP to 150 RA students as requested from Robin Gore at UWP; These RAs will be in position to interact with hundreds of other students. We shared story of Ben’s suicide, our journey since; went through Safety & Crisis Plan, handed out bracelets and explained resources and informed them of Campus SOS.
August 14, 2017 – Meeting with Daryl Fischer from radio station to promote BENS HOPE event
July 11, 2017 – Community SOS
June 29, 2017- Meeting with Reporter Allie Hinga from the Telegraph Herald – she’s meeting with different families who have endured a tragic loss and are finding goodness through their tragedy. Our story was one of the stories featured with others. After article ran, we received call from Mary Potter Kenyon who asked us to partake in a Healing Grief Conference at Shalom Center in Dubuque this fall.
June19, 2017 – Spoke with Executive Team regarding EPA and presented materials.
June 13, 2017 – Community SOS
May 18, 2017 – Attended Mental Health in the Workplace presentation at WI Bank & Trust from 8 – 10 PM. Speaker was Greg Chism from Madison who also promoted his and other Employee Assistance Program (EAPs). Mostly attendees represented HR. Shared our experience and offered perspective not yet considered. Feel EAPs would have been beneficial after Ben’s suicide.
May 9, 2017 – Community SOS
May 4, 2017 – Last Campus SOS at UWP for this school year
May 3, 2017 – Listened to “Screening for Mental Health” Webinar 1 – 2 PM.
May 2, 2017 – Meeting with Barb Daus to discuss BENS HOPE and managing funds/grants/applied for.
April 27, 2017 – Campus SOS meeting held at UWP
April 25, 2017 – To Clarity Clinic – delivered new BENS HOPE bracelets for them to handout.
April 20, 2017 – Terry and I had interview with United Way to inquire on funds to aid in awareness/prevention.
April 20, 2017 – Two 8th grade presentations at Platteville Middle School 12:00 – 1:40 PM.
April 19, 2017 – Three 8th grade presentations at Platteville Middle School 8:10 – 11:05 AM to educate on suicide awareness/prevention. Also spoke at Parents group meeting in evening from 6 – 7:30 PM at PHS.
April 11, 2017 – Community SOS
April 6, 2017 – Campus SOS meeting held at UWP – this session Royce Hall
March 23, 2017 – Campus SOS meeting held at UWP
March 14, 2017 – Community SOS
March 13, 2017 – Meeting with Bob Lenz from Life Promotions at noon in Appleton, WI at SAP. Prayed together and discussed our efforts to date and offered our services to help promote suicide awareness/prevention and offer support to those he may encounter.
March 2, 2017 – Interview at UWP with Sara from Exponent.
February 28, 2017 – Meeting at Clarity with Mary Ellen and Karen to discuss in-school presentation content.
February 23, 2017 – UWP Campus SOS from 5 – 6:30 PM
February 21, 2017 – Accepted invite from Darlington Lafayette Country Rural Safety Coalition to attend meeting and discuss their efforts of reviewing deaths in kids 21 and under. They realize suicide is creeping into statistics and inquired on how BENS HOPE can contribute. Became our mission through prayers and faith to prepare tools to aid in suicide prevention. Purchased BENS HOPE “tent cards” that contain Safety & Crisis Plan and resource information. We complete these with students during onsite presentations. Also purchased silicone bracelets that contain Suicide Hopeline Text # to utilize when in crisis or struggling. We provide bracelets at presentations at the BENS HOPE Suicide Awareness/Prevention event.
February 14, 2017 – Community SOS
February 9, 2017 – Meeting with Jason Artz at UWP to go over format before first UWP Campus SOS.
February 8, 2017 – Meeting at Clarity with Karen and educator on staff – Mary Ellen to discuss suicide awareness – prevention presentations in schools.
February 6, 2017 – Meeting with Jason Artz at UWP regarding SOS efforts.
January 23, 2017 – Meeting with Vicki Feldman at Platteville Middle School regarding suicide prevention awareness presentations with five – 8th grade classrooms.
January 12, 2017 – Meeting with Jason Artz at UWP regarding SOS efforts at 3:30 PM. Meeting following at Clarity Clinic at 5 PM.
January 10, 2017 – Community SOS
January 5, 2017 – Meeting with Karen at Clarity 4 – 6 PM. Provided brochures and bracelets for tissue donation.
December 9, 2016 – lunch meeting with Katie Banik (and another person from Eye Bank) @ Gina’s to discuss being an Ambassador for Lions Eye Bank.
October 26, 2016 – Meeting with Jason Artz to discuss starting SOS on campus at UWP.
October 12, 2016 – Accepted invite for lunch and presentation made at CESA 3 to group of counselors with interest to speak in their respective schools and take preventative/proactive approach with youth/students.
October 4, 2016 – Meeting with Director Karen Bradley of Clarity Clinic 4 PM
September 29, 2016 – Accepted invite from Kathy Hottenstein from Tri County Response Team and made presentation at City Hall as part of Night of Enlightenment.
September 27, 2016 – Presentation at Betty Smith’s Home with a Women’s Group.
September 24, 2016 – 2nd Annual BENS HOPE Event
September 19, 2016 – Speaking engagement at Dickeyville with EMS group per invite from Dorothy Carey 7 PM.
September 15, 2016 – Terry, Patti & members from SOS spoke at the University of Platteville to students. Panel presentation.
September 6, 2016 – Terry and Patti met with Daryl from Queen B Radio for interview to share our story, discuss SOS efforts, and promote BENS HOPE event.
August 16 & 18 2016 – SOS Group spoke to Platteville Police Department in training effort to share our stories on experiences good or bad with officials involved in respective suicides.
August 2, 2016 – SOS participants joined Patti & Terry to speak at Southwest Health Center to the EMS Crew.
June 15, 2016 – Terry and I spoke at 135th WI Funeral Directors Convention in WI Dells.