World Suicide Prevention Day 2014 ‘Suicide Prevention: One World Connected’

Think back to a really special time in your life – or a really difficult time – what made it special or what made the difference between coping and not? Our relationships with the people we love, family and friends, communities and special places is what makes life fun and if times are hard – bearable.

Dr Alys Cole-King, on behalf of Connecting with People says “Strong relationships and a sense of belonging are not only desirable but vital to emotional wellbeing.  People with positive wellbeing and a good support system are likely to have fewer health problems. Reaching out to those who have become disconnected from others and offering them support and friendship may be a life-saving act. This is especially relevant to people who are isolated and in distress. The #ConnectingWith campaign will raise awareness that strong relationships, connectedness and a sense of belonging are powerful protective factors against suicide. “

To mark WSPD and to launch the #ConnectingWith campaign @AlysColeKing will be undertaking a 24 hour live Tweetathon from 08.00 BST on 10th September to raise awareness and connect with collaborators and fellow Twitter enthusiasts around the globe! All welcome to join in using the #ConnectingWith hashtag. The tweetathon is supporting the Matthew Elvidge Trust for their suicide prevention work - donations can be made here - thank you for your support.



How you can join in

Download the #ConnectingWith certificate here
Fill in the names of the people who are connecting
Hold the completed  #ConnectingWith certificate while you pose for a photo or take a ‘selfie’
Share the photo via social media using the hashtag #Connectingwith

My family was affected by suicide in my childhood, so I know the pain it causes in those left behind – although I cannot imagine the pain that leads people to take this step. I hope that by raising awareness of the dangers of social isolation and the importance of mental health services the Connecting with People campaign will help to put in place support for people at risk of suicide and reduce its burden on societies worldwide.

Ann Shuttleworth, Practice and Learning Editor, Nursing Times

I’m supporting #ConnectingWith as it’s just as important to re-new old connections as make new ones. Connecting with People saves lives!

Nick Barnes, Suicide Safer London

Supporting #ConnectingWith as connecting with someone widens your support network

Terri Brown @TBTrainingTerri

Delighted to support #ConnectingWith as connecting with someone could save your life

Rachael Robbins, Connecting with People champion

#WSPD2014 gives me the opportunity to talk about something that affects many of us. This includes me, because I have personal experience of depression. Even though I ran a mental health trust for 13 years, I wasn’t good at recognising why I felt so terrible. If you think you need help or feel frightened that you might hurt yourself, please talk to someone you trust, see your GP or contact one of the many organisations you can find here. There are things that can be done that will change how you feel. Please remember, you are not alone. This is why I am delighted to support the #ConnectingWith campaign and encourage you to do the same!

Lisa Rodrigues CBE, Writer and Mental Health Campaigner

Having a strong sense of community and belonging is one of the most powerful protective factors against suicide. When people feel connected to something larger than themselves, they are often able to weather life’s hardships much better than those who feel isolated or who believe that they have become a burden to those who love them. Connecting with People offers an elixir of hope, compassion and support – a true antidote to suicide.

Sally Spencer-Thomas, CEO & Co-Founder, Carson J Spencer Foundation; Survivor of Loss Division Director, American Association of Suicidology

In collaboration with the Royal College of Psychiatrists we have developed a range of public education resources which are available here.