Suicide Safer Copeland is being led by Every Life Matters, a Cumbria Suicide Prevention Charity set up in 2018.
The initiative aims to reduce the number of suicides by helping people understand when someone is at risk, providing advice on how to support someone in crisis, and signposting support services for those in crisis.
The statistics around suicide in Cumbria are stark:
- on average, 1 person a week is lost in Cumbria to suicide. More than double the number that die on the county’s roads
- Cumbria’s suicide rates remain higher than the national average, and a disproportionate amount of those deaths are focused on the west coast of Cumbria
- suicide remains the most common cause of death for men aged between 20-49
- one in 15 people will make a suicide attempt at some point in their life
Chris Wood, suicide safer Copeland’s development manager said:
We’re really pleased that Sellafield Ltd has supported the vital work we’re picking up.
There are a number of mental health charities, and of course the NHS, who all do great work – but very importantly, we know that around three quarters of people who die by suicide are not in contact with any mental health services in the year leading up to their death. That means we need to start thinking about suicide prevention as a community-wide concern.
It is friends, family, work colleagues, neighbours and our network of community and voluntary organisations which all have an important part to play in saving lives. Suicide is everyone’s business, and anyone can make an intervention which might save a life.
Suicide Safer Copeland will be working to reduce the stigma and increase understanding of the signs of when someone is at risk of suicide. They’ll also provide resources to increase awareness of how to practically support someone experiencing suicidal thoughts.
Gary McKeating, head of community and development at Sellafield Ltd added:
As well as making big strategic investments that help the area become more sustainable, we also donate hundreds of thousands of pounds every year to local groups at grass roots level who are doing amazing community work.
Suicide Safer Copeland is exactly the kind of organisation we are proud to support, and I’m delighted that we’ve been able to help them get established.