Preventing suicide: we all have the potential to save a life

Each year suicide claims the lives of more than 3,500 people in Canada

Each year suicide claims the lives of more than 3,500 people in Canada.

According to the 2010 Coroner’s Report, British Columbia lost an average of 495 people a year due to suicide over the years 2001 to 2010.The effects of suicide can be devastating to B.C. communities and families.

Sept. 10 was World Suicide Prevention Day. This year, the Canadian Association for Suicide Prevention (CASP) has chosen the theme “Hope and Resiliency at Home and Work.”

The campaign is intended to give families and employees the tools they need to thrive and be safer by strengthening connections, promoting conversations about mental wellness, and knowing how we can help protect and care for each other during times of crisis.

“Many suicides are preventable,” said Jenny Turco, Community Health Facilitator with Interior Health.

“Suicide prevention is a shared responsibility – we all have the potential to make a difference and save a life.”

If someone you know is feeling suicidal, it is important to know that help is available.

The Interior Crisis Line Network is part of the 1-800-SUICIDE (784-2433) network and provides Interior Health residents with around-the-clock access to telephone support when they need assistance managing personal concerns. The toll-free number is 1-888-353-CARE (2273).

Other services are available through local mental health and substance use services, family physicians, and emergency services. Online support through websites – www.crisiscentre.bc.ca or www.youthinbc.com/ is also available.

This September events will take place across Canada and around the world to promote suicide awareness and prevention.

There is a World Suicide Prevention Day event in Williams Lake, Staying Alive: Battle for Life, which includes a remembrance ceremony, concert, and awareness event on Sept. 25 beginning at 3:30 p.m.

It begins at the Ringwood Theatre at Boitano Park and concludes at the Lake City Secondary Carson Campus for the concert. For more information, contact Bettina Schoen at 250-305-4420.

For additional information about suicide prevention and World Suicide Prevention Day, visit the Canadian Association for Suicide Prevention website at www.suicideprevention.ca.