Take the Training Ahead of World Suicide Prevention Day

People urged to take short course to improve awareness of issue

Cllr Samia Chaudhary is urging people in Hounslow to take the online suicide awareness training
Cllr Samia Chaudhary is urging people in Hounslow to take the online suicide awareness training

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September 1, 2023

Sunday 10 September is World Suicide Prevention Day and training is being made available to everyone to improve awareness of the issue.

North West London NHS, Brentford FC Community Sports Trust along with Hounslow, Ealing and Hammersmith and Fulham Councils are urging residents to take a short online course. It only takes twenty minutes to complete and 350,000 in London have already done so.

In the capital, around 10 people each week take their own lives. The big question is: If you knew someone was in crisis, would you know what to say?

Working with the city-wide mental health partnership, Thrive LDN, local councils are promoting the Zero Suicide Alliance’s free online training course. This helps people to spot the signs that someone might be feeling suicidal. The course takes the viewer through a series of scenarios and offers guidance on opening a conversation with someone you are concerned about.

Gail Dearing, Associate Director of Community Mental Health Services at West London NHS Trust, said, “I’m involved with suicide prevention campaigns for both personal and professional reasons. I lost a friend 10 years ago to suicide and miss her every day. As a Mental Health Social Worker for many years, I have experienced the loss of service users too often and know what supporting their families and friends through that ordeal is like.

“An important part of my role now is making sure support mechanisms are in place to prevent suicides across our communities in West London. We do this through our local mental health services and developing partnerships to reach more people in need of support.

“Suicide prevention is everyone’s business. We can all look out for each other, spot the signs of mental distress and challenge the stigma associated with seeking support with mental health”.

Hounslow Council’s Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care, Public Health and Transformation, Councillor Samia Chaudhary, said, “The suicide awareness training is easy to access and doesn’t take much time to complete. By the end, you will be more aware of the steps you can take to support someone you know or care about who is struggling or feeling overwhelmed.

“Taking this training is an act of compassion that, ultimately could save lives. We all need to talk more about this most sensitive of subjects and make people feel comfortable with opening up, sharing their feelings and admitting they need help.

“The theme of this year’s World Suicide Awareness Day is creating hope through action. As a compassionate and caring community, we can all take action to shine the light of hope where people have been touched with the darkness of despair.”

Anyone in Hounslow who feels overwhelmed can use the borough’s Safe Space service which is a local hub that offers virtual and telephone support. This free service is available to anyone who lives in Hounslow who is aged 18 or over. The Hounslow Safe Space helpline is accessible between 11am and 11pm every day of the year at 020 3475 5185.

Click here to take the training.

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