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U of R to host Golden Gate Bridge jump survivor for critical mental health conversation

By University Advancement and Communications Posted: February 2, 2021 2:00 p.m.

On Thursday, February 4, the U of R will host Kevin Hines for The Ripple Effect - The Kevin Hines Story.  Presented by the Faculty of Kinesiology & Health Studies and sponsored by SaskTel, the virtual presentation will allow members of the U of R community to hear Hines’ incredible story, learn how to seek and provide support and how to improve their own mental health.
On Thursday, February 4, the U of R will host Kevin Hines for The Ripple Effect - The Kevin Hines Story. Presented by the Faculty of Kinesiology & Health Studies and sponsored by SaskTel, the virtual presentation will allow members of the U of R community to hear Hines’ incredible story, learn how to seek and provide support and how to improve their own mental health. Photo: KevinHinesStory.org

Kevin Hines has defied the odds to be alive today.

He felt instant regret the second he let go of the Golden Gate Bridge railing. With his incredible desire to live, and the help of a sea lion, Hines was able to surface and survive the 220 foot fall, something only 36 people – less than 1% of jumpers – have lived from.

Hines has spent the 21 years since that day dedicating his life as an advocate for suicide prevention and spreading awareness of the importance of mental health.

On Thursday, February 4, Hines will deliver an exclusive virtual presentation for the University of Regina, The Ripple Effect - The Kevin Hines Story, presented by the Faculty of Kinesiology & Health Studies and sponsored by SaskTel. Attendees will have the opportunity to hear Hines’ incredible story and participate in important conversations around mental health.

“In October, Japan had more deaths by suicide than COVID-19 deaths from the previous 10 months,” says Hines. “It’s happening all over the world and no one is talking about it.”

Sharing his inspiring words of hope, recovery, and wellness, Hines has written a book, produced a documentary, and spoken to schools and universities, military bases, and hospital associations around the world. He has been featured in media outlets including CNN, Time Magazine, Vanity Fair, Larry King Now, and The Today Show with tips for supporting others in need, reaching out for help, and lifestyle changes to improve overall health – concepts that are so critical during a pandemic.

“People from every country have lost jobs, the ability to pay bills and feed their families, and are in a great deal of pain,” says Hines. “People who have never thought about suicide are now at risk, and people who have never had mental health issues are now experiencing them.”

Over the past year, Hines has shifted to delivering wellness supports in a virtual environment, allowing him to reach more people in more places.

“Everyone’s lives have been impacted, and there is so much more to talk about now,” says Hines. “I really miss being able to connect in person, but with virtual, we can still share positive messages and people can ask questions. I try to be as high energy on Zoom as I am in person!”

The event will serve as the kick-off to Revive and Thrive, a new U of R virtual speaker series featuring presentations to help students in pursuit of healthier lifestyles. Presentations will feature subject matter experts in areas including nutrition, sleep, gratitude, and journaling – aspects of a healthy lifestyle that Hines promotes for improving overall mental health.

“It’s getting really bleak, but there are many who have pivoted and are doing really well because they have brought in wellness routines to their home lives,” says Hines. “People who follow a regiment of exercise, eating healthy, and education for six to nine months show a dramatic improvement in their overall mental health.”

The University has committed to creating a healthy campus community and learning environment in its 2020-25 strategic plan kahkiyaw kiwȃhkomȃkȃninawak or All Our Relations. Well-being and Belonging is one of the five areas of focus in the plan, with three interconnected objectives within it: Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion; Healthy Living; and Mental Health Literacy and Research.

Dr. Harold Riemer, Dean, Faculty of Kinesiology & Health Studies, echoed the University’s commitment to well-being and the importance of giving people, like Hines, a platform to share their experience in improving mental health. 

“The need to provide students with mental health supports is a top-priority, made more pressing throughout COVID-19,” says Riemer. “Hines is an inspiring role model for students with positive messages of how to overcome personal adversity and improve overall well-being. We thank SaskTel for their support which allowed us to host Hines and further important conversations for our campus community.”

Hines hopes that attendees will use the presentation as inspiration to be more open about their struggles, seek help, and continue the conversations that he is starting.

“When you get comments back like ‘your story saved my life’ or ‘it changed my life,’ it fuels me,” says Hines. “I want to make my mission heard and felt.”


The Ripple Effect – The Kevin Hines Story

Presented by the Faculty of Kinesiology & Health Studies and Sponsored by SaskTel
Thursday, February 4, 7:00-8:00 p.m.
Pre-registration is free, but required.

Students can register here.
Faculty, staff, and community members can register here.

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