According to the world health organisation suicides take a high toll. Over 800 000 people die due to suicide every year and it is the second leading cause of death in 15 to 29-year-olds. There are indications that for each adult who died of suicide there may have been more than 20 others attempting suicide. Suicide is the leading cause of death for Australians aged between 15 and 44. Men are four times more likely to die by suicide than women and ABS data (2012) shows more people die from suicide than road deaths. The fact remains that suicides are preventable.A suicidal person may not ask for help, but that doesn't mean that help isn't wanted. Most people who commit suicide don't want to die—they just want to stop hurting. Suicide prevention starts with recognising the warning signs and taking them seriously. If you think a friend or family member or a community member is considering suicide, you might be afraid to bring up the subject. But talking openly about suicidal thoughts and feelings can save a life. Everyone has a role to play in preventing suicide. Choices we make today can help prevent suicide. Trained counsellors within communities can pay critical role in suicide prevention. They can provide support to vulnerable individuals and engage in follow-up care, fight stigma and support those bereaved by suicide. Given the widespread stigma around suicide, most people who are contemplating suicide do not know who to speak to. Talking openly can give an individual other options or the time to rethink his/her decision, thereby preventing suicide. In the wake of a loved one's death by suicide, families often disintegrate, unable to deal with the intense grief and the difficult, painful, and often unanswerable question of "Why?" For every suicide, it is estimated that at least six persons are affected. These include family members, co-workers, neighbours, and close friends. Jigsaw Training Group's CEO Sally Healey said "Jigsaw is committed to creating suicide safe communities" by training new counsellors who can then go back into the community with a skill set that facilitates a proactive and caring approach for those in need. The need for access to counselling is high priority for individuals suffering anxiety, depression & difficulties with; coping emotionally, coping psychologically and lack of confidence/low self-esteem – which if left unaddressed, impacts directly on sustainable health and wellbeing. "We encourage our students who graduate to give at least one hour volunteer counselling per week to those who may be suffering. Mrs. Healey said" Jigsaw Training Group is currently providing counselling graduates the opportunity to be involved with aged care homes, community groups and schools. Little by little we can all play a part in addressing this major problem."
- Written by Patrick Page
- Published: 28 Nov 2016