Each small moment can add up to make a big difference.
That’s the message individuals, organizations, policy makers, and advocates are sharing this year to commemorate World Suicide Prevention Day (WSPD) on September 10th.
The Canadian Association for Suicide Prevention (CASP) estimates that each day in Canada, 11 people die by suicide and 210 make a suicide attempt. Suicide occurs across all age, economic, social, and ethnic boundaries. The tragedy of suicide impacts the entire community. Raising awareness opens doors to help, hope, and healing. CASP is encouraging Canadians to participate in WSPD and take a minute to:
- Wear a suicide prevention ribbon
- Speak up and share the message on social media that help is available
- Reach out to a friend or family member who may be struggling and ask them if they want to talk
CMHA Waterloo Wellington offers Skills for Safer Living, a Suicide-Intervention Support Group in Kitchener, Cambridge, and Guelph. The program is a combination of a twenty week skills-based group and a peer support group for individuals with recurring thoughts and behaviours about suicide. CMHA WW also offers safeTALK and ASIST (Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training) workshops for individuals who wish to become suicide-alert helpers.
Though not all suicides can be prevented, some strategies can help reduce the risk, such as:
- Seeking treatment, care and support for mental health concerns — and building a good relationship with a doctor or other health professionals
- Staying connected with a care team or community-based program to help manage stress and monitor for thoughts of suicide
- Building social support networks, such as family, friends, a peer support or support group, or connections with a cultural or faith community
- Learning good coping skills to deal with problems, and trusting in coping abilities
Universal prevention strategies recommended by the World Health Organization also include increasing access to health care and responsible media reporting.
For more information or to learn more about suicide prevention or positive mental health, contact CMHA Waterloo Wellington at 1-844-CMHA WW3 (264-2993).