Take a minute, change a life

Published: 06 Sep 2017

World Suicide Prevention Day takes place on 10 September 2017 and Hertfordshire County Council, along with organisations across the county, is supporting the day.  The theme this year is ‘Take a minute, change a life’.  

Every year, more than 800,000 people worldwide take their own life and up to 25 times as many make a suicide attempt.  A recent study commissioned by the Mental Health Foundation revealed that nearly two in three people in Britain have faced mental health issues.  Offering a listening ear can make all the difference.  

Hertfordshire County Council’s Cabinet Member for Public Health, Richard Roberts, said: “World Suicide Prevention Day raises awareness of the devastating impact suicide has on families, friends and communities.

“Hertfordshire has one of the lowest suicide rates in the country with a very strong partnership approach; we want to go further and make our County safer for everyone. No one should ever feel that taking their life is their only option.

“Everyone has the chance to help, reach out to someone, a complete stranger, family member or close friend. “Are you Ok?” could be enough to change the course of someone’s life.” 

To mark the day, there will be events taking place across the county, including a charity bike ride in Stevenage (visit https://mindinmidherts.org.uk for information).

Dr Jane Padmore, Executive Director of Quality and Safety, at Hertfordshire Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust, said: “The impact of suicide on family, friends, the wider community, first responders and NHS staff cannot be overestimated. As well as improving support for families, HPFT is leading in providing guidance and training, as well as public awareness through the Spot the Signs campaign. This work is focussed on encouraging all of us to be able to talk about how we are feeling, help those who may be thinking about suicide and to signpost them to mental health services available in Hertfordshire.”

If you want to find out more about available help, please visit www.hertfordshire.gov.uk/healthinherts

Alternatively visit www.samaritans.org.uk or call 116 123.