Press Release | Raising Awareness of Suicide Prevention across Hertfordshire

August 17, 2018 12:01 pm Published by

The Counselling Foundation are partnering with Spot the Signs and Save a Life, the Hertfordshire suicide prevention campaign whose vision is to make Hertfordshire a county where no one ever gets to a point where they feel suicide is their only option.  Hosting an event in St Albans town centre on Wednesday 5 September between 11.30am – 2.30pm  the teams aim to raise awareness of suicide and prevention to coincide with World Suicide Prevention Day (WSPD) which takes place on Monday 10 September.

World Suicide Prevention Day is an opportunity to encourage us to talk and spread awareness of suicide prevention.  In the UK more than 6,000 people due by suicide  a year, an average of 18 each day.  Male suicide is often called the ‘silent killer’ as it is the single biggest cause of death for men under the age of 45 in the UK, three times higher than for females.

Participating in regular physical activity is associated with lower rates of depression and anxiety across all age groups. The teams are encouraging everyone particularly men to participate in pedal power by cycling between 1st -17th September and dedicating miles cycled to suicide prevention using the hashtag #HertsWSPD18, or sending photos to hpft.spotthesigns@nhs.net.

The miles will be added up and sent to the international Cycle Around the Globe page.  There are prizes for anyone that cycles the furthest during the campaign, whether on the road or fitness bike and anyone is able to get involved.

The Counselling Foundation provide affordable counselling to support the many people who have been bereaved by suicide or have been close to someone who has made a suicide attempt, who also need support, helping to remove the stigma of talking openly about suicide.

Foundation Clinical Manager, Noel Hargrave said

“We fully support Spot the Signs campaign because friends, family and colleagues are the ones on hand in a time of need and if they know how to open or encourage conversations to make a difference. Being able to spot the signs of distress and suicidal behaviour is the first step in preventing suicide. The Foundation offer counselling support that is affordable without the need for a GP referral.  There is a also a specific bereavement service for those needing support following the loss of a loved one.”

You don’t need to be an expert to talk about mental health. Often, just asking if someone’s OK and letting them know you’re listening can give people the confidence to open up about how they’re feeling. Talking makes a difference and can save lives.

The event is an opportunity to encourage the community to talk and connect with each other and spread awareness of suicide and how it can be prevented.

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