The Portsmouth Suicide Prevention Partnership today announces the creation of a 'crisis card' and funded safeTALK training to coincide with World Suicide Prevention Day (10 September).

The 'crisis card' is a credit card sized fold-out leaflet providing details of organisations who can provide support to someone in helping them address issues that have been shown to be some of the biggest risk factors in suicide, for example; debt, relationship breakdown, bereavement and homelessness. SafeTALK is a half-day alertness training session that prepares anyone 15 or older to become a suicide-alert helper. People attending the training will learn how to:

1. Challenge attitudes that inhibit open talk about suicide

2. Listen to the person’s feelings about suicide to show that they are taken seriously

3. Move quickly to connect them with someone trained in suicide intervention

The safeTALK training has been funded by Portsmouth City Council to enable people to attend for free. There are 20 places available at the first session in November, which will be held at the University of Portsmouth. 

This activity is the latest offering from the Portsmouth Suicide Prevention Partnership, which is a multi-agency group set up by Public Health in Portsmouth City Council to create and oversee delivery of a Portsmouth Suicide Prevention Plan.

Cllr Matthew Winnington, Cabinet Member for Heath, Wellbeing & Social Care at Portsmouth City Council, said; "Suicide is incredibly complex, with people choosing to take their life for many different reasons. It might seem like a sudden or impulsive act but most often it's due to an unresolved crisis or prolonged period of distress or hopelessness. Suicidal people don’t usually want their life to end, they just want their emotional or physical pain to stop.

"We know that taking early action can prevent individuals from reaching a point of unresolved crisis. Both of these latest initiatives from the Portsmouth Suicide Prevention Partnership are designed to do just that. They're both centred on the core suicide prevention elements of talking with someone about how they're feeling and helping them to access appropriate support.

"Suicide prevention is something that we all need to get involved in as two-thirds of people who die by suicide aren't in touch with our mental health services, and it's the single biggest killer of men aged between 20 and 49 in the UK. I hope that the crisis card and safeTALK training will work alongside other activity in helping more of us feel able to stop someone reaching crisis point. I'm pleased to be booked on the safeTALK training myself to become a suicide-alert helper."

For more information on the Portsmouth Suicide Prevention Partnership, the Suicide Prevention Plan for Portsmouth or the safeTALK training please contact Jane Leech on jane.leech@portsmouthcc.gov.uk.

Whatever you're going through, you can call Samaritans free any time, from any phone on 116 123. They are available round the clock, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. If you need a response immediately, it's best to call on the phone. This number is FREE to call. You don't have to be suicidal to call.

Or visit http://www.connectingwithpeople.org/StayingSafe