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Help us reduce the stigma of mental ill health

Can you help us reduce the stigma of mental ill health in Cornwall? Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly have a higher rate of suicide than the national average. The question we are all asking is, what can we do to change this?

Last week, we marked World Suicide Prevention Day by hosting a Towards Zero Suicide event. This brought people together to learn from each other and workshop innovative approaches. This included:

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  • residents
  • community leaders
  • volunteers and
  • Mental Health professionals

A reason so many people take their own lives is because they don’t want to talk about their mental health. They are therefore not likely to seek medical help. That means we need to work together as a community to make a difference, not just take a medical approach.

We all need to be braver in talking about our own mental health. We also need to be braver in asking friends and family how they are really feeling underneath those sometimes deflecting stock answers of ‘I’m okay’ or ‘I’m fine’.

You may not feel comfortable starting these conversations, so why not take a look at our ‘How are you really feeling?’ video and leaflet for ideas. If the person does open up to you and say they're not okay, then the leaflet has some helpful tips on what to do next. Conversations like this really can save lives.

We want to change the landscape of mental health and suicide in Cornwall. Do you have ideas for how we can work with your community to open conversations around mental health and reduce suicides? If so please do get in touch through . We also have a range of training courses that may be of interest.

The ‘Towards Zero Suicides’ events were hosted by Cornwall Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (CFT) and Cornwall Council. They were funded by the Duchy Charity.