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ST. LOUIS, MO (KTVI)– The St. Louis County Children’s Fund is working to prevent tragedies like the one in Colorado.

The new government department provides resources to agencies that treat young people suffering from mental illnesses including schizophrenia, depression and bipolar disorder.

Experts say communities need to talk more about mental illness and take training courses in mental health first aid.

The crisis call center is staffed by mental health professionals who work 24 hours a day 7days a week. They receive up to 600 calls a day from people in need of help, including those threatening to harm themselves and others.

Most people are afraid to talk about mental illnesses. It’s a subject that’s rarely discussed, especially in public.

Behavioral Health Response offers courses in mental health first aid. It’s an interactive session which runs 12 hours and is free and open to the public.

For more information about the youth connection crisis help line call 314-628-2929 or text 4hlp-231-658. For information about the mental health first aid courses call 314-469-6644 or 1-800-811-4760.