Introduction by Paula Chappell, Public Health Practitioner
Welcome to our Autumn 2022 edition of the Towards Zero newsletter.
It feels as though there is so much great work happening in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly around suicide prevention and it’s good to have an opportunity to share some of that with you.
World Suicide Prevention Day (10 September) had a theme this year of creating hope through action and individual and collective actions all count towards making a difference. We have chosen to reflect this theme through our Towards Zero event for 2022.
The Towards Zero event is an opportunity to spotlight key areas of suicide prevention that are going well, but also a chance to consider areas that need more focus.
Thank you for continuing to support the Towards Zero ambition, suicide prevention truly is everyone’s business.
Earlier this year we asked for ideas on key areas to include in this year’s Towards Zero event - thank you to everyone who completed the questionnaire. Your views are very important to us and were used to inform the planning for this event.
The Towards Zero event this year will take place on:
Friday 25 November 2022
Heartlands, Dudnance Lane, Pool, Cornwall
This will be the first opportunity since 2019 to stage the event in a face-to-face format and all allocated places were snapped up immediately upon release. We have since increased capacity and again filled this, but we are keeping a waiting list.
Please could we ask that you cancel your ticket via our Eventbrite page if you find you are unable to attend? This will allow someone else to attend in your place and prevent food waste by cancelling your lunch order.
For those unable to attend on the day, we will be filming the presentations to be shared online at a later date.
We’ve been working on developing a suicide prevention strategy for Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly for a little while now. You may have taken part in the stakeholder or public engagement around the content of this and thank you so much for your thoughts if so.
We presented the draft document at the Isles of Scilly Council on 15 September and Cornwall Council Cabinet on 27 September where this was agreed for adoption. We are very pleased to be able to share a link to this very important document which you can find on our mental health pages.
Utilising some NHS England transformation funding, Public Health and the Integrated Care Board (previously the Clinical Commissioning Group) have collaborated to offer funding to community based innovative suicide prevention projects. The first round of funding was in 2020/21 and there is another round currently in action for 2022/23.
The projects are funded for 12 months to demonstrate the breadth of work taking place in our communities that can prevent suicide and/or reduce self-harm. We’ll keep you posted on the progress of the current projects as it unfolds, and more information about the projects can be found on the Suicide Prevention Innovation Fund page.
Hope Walks is a free walking group for people who have been affected by the loss of someone close to them who may have died by suicide. The aim of the group is to help people adjust to their loss by providing peer support and the opportunity to ‘walk and talk’ in the natural environment. The group meets at Trelissick Gardens near Truro once a month, and more walks will be launching across the county.
Email email@example.com for more information.
The Samaritans are relaunched their Small Talk Saves Lives Campaign in October, as part of a wider public awareness campaign, to ensure that suicide prevention is everyone’s business. More information can be found on the Samaritans website.
Samaritans is there for anyone who needs someone to listen. Call free day or night on 116 123 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
It’s over a year now since the launch of the Orange Button Community Scheme and it continues to go from strength to strength. We now have over 1,100 volunteers in our communities wearing the distinctive orange badge. It shows that they are OK to say or hear the word suicide and can listen without judgement.
The scheme is a way of identifying people who have undertaken mental health first aid or suicide prevention training. Someone struggling with mental ill health, having thoughts of suicide or worried about a friend or family member, can ask an Orange Button wearer for information and support.
We want to create a community of Orange Button wearers across Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly. A community that can listen non-judgmentally and be a first step to helping move people towards the information and support they need. It is not a substitute for counselling, mental health support or a crisis service. It is a community scheme made up of members of the public. It is about listening, information giving and signposting.
You can find out more about the scheme, including how it works and how to get involved on the Orange Button page.
No one should suffer in silence. Please help spread the word about the Orange Button Community Scheme.