Sept. 9 event organized by loss survivors to benefit nonprofit Buckelew Programs

Sept. 6, 2022

Artists From Across California Host an All-Day Tattoo Event to Raise Awareness & Funds for Suicide Prevention

Sept. 9 event organized by loss survivors to benefit nonprofit Buckelew Programs

Petaluma, CA – On Friday, Sept. 9, 2022, tattoo artists from around the Bay Area and Los Angeles will donate their talents and ink for an all-day event to raise awareness and funds for suicide prevention programs.

Petaluma Tattoo is hosting the event during Suicide Prevention Awareness Month to encourage open conversations about a too-often stigmatized topic and support a community of survivors and friends. Artists will donate 100% of the day’s proceeds to Buckelew Programs for suicide prevention services. Buckelew is the largest nonprofit provider of comprehensive mental health and substance use services in Marin, Sonoma and Napa counties. Buckelew also operates the region’s 9-8-8 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline, one of 13 California call centers participating in the new national 988 network. Trained hotline volunteers respond to approximately 1,000 calls 24/7 each month from Marin, Sonoma, Lake and Mendocino counties.

With 14 celebrated artists providing tattoos, this is the third – and largest – annual event organized by Petaluma Tattoo owner Nick Rodin. Rodin lost his brother to suicide in 2009 and then his best friend two months later. After struggling for nearly a decade to talk about the tragedies, Rodin finally learned to share his story, and his path to healing began. Now Nick hopes this benefit event can help ease others’ pain.

“We are bringing people together in a way I hadn’t anticipated when I started,” Rodin said. “Many clients come in for a meaningful tattoo – often to memorialize someone they lost or mark a significant time in their lives. While they’re here, they meet other people who struggle with depression or lost someone to suicide. They arrive as perfect strangers and then bond.”

Tattoo enthusiasts are expected to begin lining up at Nick’s shop at 11 a.m. Nick estimates his artists will ink 80 or more people throughout the day and night. Meanwhile, the Buckelew Programs outreach team will be on hand to share information about services and support groups.

“As California faces a devastating mental health crisis exacerbated by the pandemic, it’s more critical than ever to talk openly about suicide and find ways to expand access to mental health care,” said Buckelew Programs CEO Chris Kughn, LMFT. “One in six Californians live with a mental illness, and suicides have been steadily increasing by 25% nationally over the last two decades. The generosity of Petaluma Tattoo, the artists and the participants not only raises vital funds for services for our diverse population; it helps shift public perception and spread information.”

Suicide is preventable. If you or someone you know is in mental health distress, call 9-8-8 for the Suicide & Crisis Lifeline.

When: Sept. 9, 2022, 11 a.m.- approx. 9 p.m.
Where: Petaluma Tattoo, 406 Petaluma Blvd South, Petaluma, CA
How: First come, first served. Clients can choose from in-house designs, including popular symbols such as the semicolon (a reminder that your story isn’t over) and a rose with a broken stem (symbolizing a life cut short).

Scheduled Artists & Donors: Petaluma Tattoo; Lou’s Luncheonette; Stemple Creek Ranch; Lagunitas Brewing Co.; Ballet Folklorico Paquiyollotzin; and artists Jill Bonny, Freddy Corbin, Paul Dobleman, Jesse Haney, Aaron Hodges, Jenn Lee, Cody Miller, Ryan Neri, Greg Rojas, Jeff Rassier, Kahlil Rintye, Nick Rodin, Adrian Sanchez, Scott Sylvia

Nick Rodin, Petaluma Tattoo
Cell: (510) 333-0769 Shop: (707) 769-8282

Ilene Lelchuk Snyder, Buckelew Programs media liaison
(415) 298-1670

About Nick Rodin
Nick has been a tattoo artist for 23 years, working at San Francisco’s world-renowned "Black Heart Tattoo" before opening Petaluma Tattoo in 2020. He specializes in traditional American-style and botanical-style tattoos. Learn more at

About Buckelew Programs
Founded in 1970, Buckelew Programs is the largest nonprofit provider of comprehensive mental health and substance use services for North Bay residents, regardless of their ability to pay. Buckelew provides direct services to about 3,000 clients in Marin, Sonoma and Napa counties and answers approximately 12,000 suicide and crisis hotline calls annually from Marin, Sonoma, Lake and Mendocino counties. Buckelew services include Counseling, Supported Housing, Service Navigation, Substance Use Recovery and Suicide Prevention for individuals of all ages and their families. Learn more at