Working together to prevent suicide in the South East

HSE Media Release: 9 September

Promoted by the World Health Organisation (WHO), the theme of this year’s global event is 'Working together to prevent suicide’

In marking “World Suicide Prevention Day, the HSE/South East Community Healthcare is encouraging people to think about how offering support may play a part in helping to prevent suicide. The act of showing care and concern to someone who may be vulnerable can make a big difference in their lives. Asking someone whether they are okay, listening to what they have to say in a non-judgemental way and letting them know you care can all have a significant impact. It can make all the difference.

Each county in the South East has developed its own suicide prevention and self-harm plan, linked to the national Connecting for Life strategy. In each case, the plan emanated from a comprehensive process of consultation and engagement facilitated by South East Community Healthcare - inputted to by local people and those who provide services to them.

The Connecting for Life plans in Carlow, Kilkenny, South Tipperary, Waterford and Wexford set out a vision where fewer lives are lost through suicide and where communities and individuals are empowered to improve their mental health and wellbeing.

The HSE/South East Community Healthcare’s Resource Officer for Suicide Prevention Tracy Nugent says:

“If you, a member of your family or someone you know is in distress or needs someone to talk to, help, support and advice are available. In the first instance contact your GP, if it is late in the evening or at the weekend call CAREDOC on (0818) 300 365. If you or someone is in immediate danger go to the Emergency Department of your nearest hospital or call the Emergency Services on 999 or 112.”

“Suicide prevention is everyone’s concern. Looking after our mental health is a cornerstone for improving the health of our people. It is as important as physical health. Throughout the health services, we have structures in place to try to ensure that people get the right type of help and we look forward to establishing a better understanding of suicidal behaviour and supporting communities to prevent and respond to issues associated with suicidal behaviour.”

“Every death by suicide is a tragic and devastating event that impacts on the lives of so many people. We are all part of communities which link us to friends, family, colleagues and/or neighbours.  A sense of community is very important for maintaining our mental health and helps foster a supportive network for everyone, especially for those going through tough times.”

Traveller Mental Health Co-ordinator with HSE/South East Community Healthcare Mary Byrne has pointed to a number of (socially/physically distant) “shine a light” candle lighting remembrance events taking place around the region marking World Suicide Prevention Day.

She says, “latest figures show that suicide accounts for 11% of all Traveller deaths and that the suicide rate is seven times the national average for Traveller men and six times the national average for Traveller women".

Travellers Together Preventing Suicide is facilitating a national webinar (6-8 pm). In addition:

  •  The Carlow Traveller Project are hosting an Awareness Morning at 10 am in St. Catherine’s Community Services Centre.
  •  The Tipperary Rural Traveller Project will host a balloon release in Tipperary Town at 11 am.
  •  The Waterford Traveller Youth project will be launching a suicide prevention video at the Waterford Business Park at 11.30 am.
  •  The Clonmel, Kilkenny, Waterford and Wexford Traveller Healthcare Projects have encouraged people to light a candle at 8 pm in memory of a loved one lost and for the survivors of suicide.

Ends. 

Last updated on: 09 / 09 / 2020