World Suicide Prevention Day 2017
World Suicide Prevention Day is held each year on 10 September. It is an annual awareness raising event organised by International Association for Suicide Prevention (IASP) and the World Health Organisation (WHO). This year’s theme “take a minute, change a life” is about connecting with others and letting people know that #ITSOKAYTOTALK.
This year join TELL in changing lives by taking a minute to change a life.
The tragedy of suicide
In 2016 roughly 60 people ended their life each day in Japan. While this represents a drop from previous years, it is just the the tip of the iceberg when discussing suicide in this country.
The World Health Organization research suggests that, globally, for every completed suicide there are another 25 attempts. For Japan, that represents 1,500 people each day and over 500,000 every year.
The burden of suicide on individuals, families, friends, colleagues, and our communities is unacceptable. Yet our lack of willingness to openly discuss the leading cause of suicide - mental illness - and support those struggling with these illnesses continues. This places thousands of lives at risk everyday, and increasingly these are young lives.
Making a difference
Most people who die by suicide don’t want to die – they are struggling with a mental illness that they and most people around them don't understand. They feel they have failed everyone, they will never get better, and they cannot see any other way out of their pain.
Reaching out to people who are going through a difficult time can be a real game changer. Contrary to popular belief, talking about suicide does not give someone the idea. Talking about it openly is one of the most helpful things to do. Hearing from friends or family, or just being told that ‘it’s ok to talk’ can make a huge difference.
As parents, friends, teachers, and colleagues we all need to learn more about mental illnesses and to look around us for those who may be struggling. Mental illness often first appears in adolescence or childhood and affects one in four people. This means we all know someone who is struggling. Effective communication about mental illness in our schools, workplaces, universities, and homes is essential in breaking down the myths and stigma that prevent people accessing support, treatment, and recovering.
If you are struggling with thoughts of suicide, please reach out to our Lifeline 03 5477 0992 (or our TELL Chat service from September 9). Please know there is support, hope, and people who care. If you are worried about someone please visit our website or call our Lifeline to learn more about supporting them.
Remembering someone important
If you have lost someone to suicide, we would like you to be aware that people all over the world are lighting a candles and placing them in a window at 8pm on 10 September to remember lives that were cut short.
On WSPD - and everyday - it is important to remember how precious and sometimes precarious life is. Come join one of our events, or hold an event for us, or simply take a minute to reach out to someone: a complete stranger or close family member or friend and change the course of their life.
On the day before WSPD, TELL will launch a new overnight chat support service to help people who may be struggling throughout the night when our Lifeline is closed. This service will initially be offered on Saturday nights, with a goal to cover every night over the next few years. You can help our chat service with donations, or by becoming a TELL Chat support worker no matter where you live in Japan.
TELL Tokyo Tower Climb
TELL is excited to be holding our first ever Tokyo Tower Climb on WSPD. Join us, and others all over the world in making a big noise about suicide prevention at one of Tokyo’s most iconic structures. The Tokyo Tower Climb is an exciting challenge that ranks with endurance events at some of the world’s most famous buildings and towers. Whether you take part by yourself, or form a team, every step you take will be helping to raise important funds to take the TELL Lifeline 24/7.
For our fourth year, TELL will continue to hold our Talkie Walkie walks all over Japan on WSPD 10 September talking to people, gathering signatures of support, and handing out information about suicide prevention and supports in Japan. You can join one of our existing walks or hold your own walk and help TELL in raising awareness about suicide prevention.
Fall Lifeline Support Worker Training
We’re behind you all the way with the training and give you the support you need to volunteer on the Lifeline.
TELL Connoisseurs' Auction Donation Appeal
This year marks the 22nd year of TELL’s Annual Connoisseurs’ Auction. It will be held at the Ark Hills Club in Tokyo on Friday, November 17.
Once again, we’d like to ask for your help.