Talking about Suicide Saves Lives
Talking about Suicide Saves Lives, says Lifeline Aotearoa
“Unfortunately, everyone has a suicide story,” says Lifeline Aotearoa CEO, Jo Denvir. The leading helplines organisation is preparing for World Suicide Prevention Day on 10 September by issuing a call to all New Zealanders to talk more about suicide.
“You don’t have to look very far to find someone who has been affected by suicide, but it’s not something we’re comfortable talking about in New Zealand” says Ms Denvir. “The ripple effects of suicide are enormous. It’s not only the family who are affected, but friends and co-workers can also experience tremendous guilt. The legacy of suicide is definitely under-estimated.”
Lifeline Aotearoa has chosen World Suicide Prevention Week to launch the 0508 TAUTOKO helpline; New Zealand’s first suicide prevention helpline where those who may be considering suicide, or people affected by suicide, can call for help and support. “We know those considering suicide often reach out. The aim of 0508 TAUTOKO is to make that support readily available, where people can call without fear of being judged or rejected.” Says Lifeline Aotearoa Helplines Manager, Dylan Norton.
The helpline runs alongside Lifeline Aoteaora’s community awareness campaign around suicide, recently launched at Orakei marae. “The ‘start the conversation today’ campaign specifically targets our high rate of Maori youth suicide, but the message is the same throughout the community” comments Ms Denvir. “Just asking if someone is OK, commenting that they don’t seem themselves, can make a huge difference and get someone talking.”
For further information on the ‘start the conversation today’ campaign please visit www.lifeline.org.nz