Would you know what to say to someone feeling suicidal?

September 6, 2023

Image reads Would you know what to say to someone feeling suicidal


Join the effort to reduce West Yorkshire’s above-average suicide rate

People across West Yorkshire are encouraged to sign up as Suicide Prevention Champions and join efforts to reduce the area’s above-average suicide rate.

The most recent figures show West Yorkshire continues to have a higher suicide rate than England as a whole, with a rolling three-year rate in 2021 of 13.2 per 100,000 people, compared to 10.4 per 100,000 nationally. This was a rise from 12.6 in West Yorkshire in 2018-2020.

That’s why West Yorkshire Health and Care Partnership are helping everyone to play a part in lowering the suicide rate by taking an active role in challenging stigma and raising awareness.

As we count down to World Suicide Prevention Day, on September 10, West Yorkshire Health and Care Partnership (WY HCP) has launched its ‘Suicide Prevention Champions’ campaign.

The campaign aims to recruit a growing cohort of Champions willing to challenge stigma and raise awareness to help create a world where fewer people die by suicide.

At Healthwatch Kirklees our Operations manager Clare tells us why she’s signed up as a Suicide Prevention Champion:

“I wanted to become a suicide champion as I’ve been personally affected by suicide in my family. The impact can be devastating and I know that the more we can talk openly about the subject, the more likely we are to break down barriers and encourage people to speak honestly about how they feel. 

Once when I was out running, we came across someone attempting to take their own life. Because I’d been on some suicide awareness training, I knew what to say and what to do. Thankfully, they accessed some support and I’m still in touch with them.

My pledges for the campaign are:

• to talk about mental health and suicide openly and honestly with friends, family and colleagues.

• to share the Zero Suicide Alliance training with people.”


Image reads Every life lost to suicide is one too many

How can you help?

Champions can access all the latest suicide prevention news, resources, support services and information so they can help spread the word and encourage suicide prevention action in their home, communities and workplaces across West Yorkshire and beyond.

Becoming a Suicide Prevention Champion takes just minutes, signing up via an online form, watching a 20-minute suicide awareness video by the Zero Suicide Alliance, and making a pledge – big or small – about how you plan to promote suicide prevention and challenge stigma of suicide. If you’ve only got 10 minutes there is gateway training available here where you’ll learn:

  • See – How to spot suicide warning signs
  • Say – How to have a conversation with someone you’re worried about
  • Signpost – Where to direct someone for further support  

For more information and to sign up, visit https://suicidepreventionwestyorkshire.co.uk/becomeachampion

If you need help now


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