Death is not the end but could be the beginning of a significant journey. The late Avicii, renowned Swedish DJ, lives on through the foundation formed by Klas Bergling, his father.
Tim Bergling Foundation was born in the summer of 2019 after Klas and his wife, Anki Lidèn, decided to continue their son's advocacy on climate change and endangered animals.
The major thrust of the foundation though, is suicide prevention. Avicii took his own life on April 20, 2018, that shocked the world, most specifically the EDM community. He was only 28 at that time. His parents did not want to waste away the influential music and the name built by their dance music superstar son.
In an interview with Billboard, Klas spoke about what the organization has been involved in after a year of its existence. He aims not just to raise funds in supporting organizations working to prevent suicide, but he wants to play a part in the prevention process itself.
Klas acknowledged the non-existence of suicide prevention helpline in their home country, Sweden. Tim Bergling foundation consulted with many experts in certain organizations, which he said, "these experts are the ones who guide us." He shared that they helped two organizations establish a "24/7, 365 day a year helpline."
Mr. Bergling said the foundation's primary focus is on children, young people, and young grownups. Bris, one of the organizations, aims to reach out to children, while the other one called Mind serves the other age brackets. He emphasized preventive measures are the most efficient ways that must be taken, and he surmised, "they are often the actions that are least taken."
"It's very obvious that preventative actions are the most efficient actions you can take,"
Apart from the two institutions, the foundation has a continuous partnership with two other organizations, Choice and Suicide Zero; he went on to share. The first gives out lectures in schools about drugs and alcohol; while the latter raises awareness on the issue and get more funds for preventive measures. Klas says these four organizations are the foundation's priority.
Klas, he admits, now has a deeper understanding of suicide through the work they are doing. He did not know much about it, saying, "It's so complicated and unpredictable regarding what people might potentially be suicidal." He is now aware that the issue is a global problem and came to know that only 38 countries offer preventative plans to reduce the suicide rate in their turf.
Mr. Bergling acknowledges that "it goes back to mental illness - that's where it comes from." He recognized the pressing need to talk about it, which he believes will be a big help in stemming the problem.
A highly emotional The Avicii tribute concert was held in Stockholm, Sweden, on December 5, 2019. An audience of almost 60,000 gathered with the likes of David Guetta, Rita Ora, Kygo, Aloe Blacc, Adam Lambert, and a dozen more as they celebrated the EDM legend's music through song and dance. The proceeds of the concert were directed towards Tim Bergling Foundation to support its effort on suicide prevention.
Karl said during the interview that it was a beautiful evening. He said he felt "high" with the experience, and "it was such an unbelievably loving atmosphere."