We’re united to prevent suicide

10th September 2020

On World Suicide Prevention Day, SAMH is calling on everyone in Scotland to work together to save lives.

Every day in Scotland, an average of two people die by suicide. Today marks World Suicide Prevention Day, an opportunity to reflect on the role we can all play in saving lives.  

SAMH is supporting the launch of United to Prevent Suicide, developed as part of Every Life Matters, Scotland’s National Suicide Prevention Plan which sets out ten ambitious actions. 

Billy Watson, Chief Executive, SAMH said:

“At SAMH suicide prevention is at the heart of everything that we do. Our generous supporters have made it possible for us to invest charitable funds in this area, and we are deeply grateful to them. This week, at a time where suicide prevention has never been more important, SAMH is proud to support the launch of United to Prevent Suicide. We believe that that we can and must work together to save lives.”

The charity is clear that preventing suicide can begin with something as simple as having a conversation with someone. Its project, The Changing Room, demonstrates the power of conversations, using football to bring together men in their middle years to take action on mental health and wellbeing. Funded by Movember and based at Hearts and Hibs football clubs, The Changing Room has helped many men to focus on their mental health for the first time.

Robert Allen started going to SAMH’s The Changing Room project after a suicide attempt. He said,

“I felt like I was on my own, but suddenly I was in a room with people who all shared a love of football. I  remember thinking, not only is it helping me feel better but I’m going to be part of making other people in this group feel better. I felt worth a lot, and for a long time I didn’t feel like I was worth much. The Changing Room completely transformed my life, and it all started with that conversation about mental health.”

Our suicide prevention work

As an active member of the group leading on Every Life Matters, SAMH has shown its commitment to working across sectors to save lives. Through its role as the suicide prevention lead in the North East of Scotland, SAMH has worked alongside Aberdeen City Council, Aberdeenshire Council, NHS Grampian and Police Scotland to train 500 people to ask the right questions when someone is thinking about suicide.

In order to reach a deeper understanding of the causes of suicide, SAMH has funded research with the University of Glasgow’s Suicidal Behaviour Research Laboratory, in partnership with Samaritans, to explore the risk factors affecting middle-aged men, who are at  particular risk of suicide. The charity has also developed invaluable resources to help people who are living with thoughts of suicide, supporting someone affected or have been bereaved through suicide.  

Get involved with United to Prevent Suicide

It's time Scotland came together to prevent suicide. Find out how you can help by visiting www.unitedtopreventsuicide.org.uk. If you need help, or seeking information and support, please see our seeking support page.  For media enquiries, please email communications@samh.org.uk