Campaign to government to investigate suicide rate: please support

One of the major issues that the UK has to respond to is the increasing rate of suicide in the UK. With Harmless representing the voice of people that self harm, who are also at a much higher risk of suicide, it is important that we ask you to support this campaign for a serious investigation to be upheld by Government.

Enquiry into the high rate of suicide in England

Responsible department: Department of Health

We are calling for Mr Duncan Selbie as the Chief executive of Public Health England to start an enquiry into the high rate of suicide in England
.
Just based based on the statistics published in The Samaritans Suicide Statistics Report 2013 the male suicide rate is on average 3-5 times higher than the female rate.

Statistics show the overwhelming number of Overall Suicides are in England

Men aged 30 to 44 are the age group with the highest Rate of suicide.

Overall between 2010 and 2011 there was a significant increase in the UK suicide rate.

https://submissions.epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/60371/signature/new

Harmless team come together to make a positive difference in the field of self harm

It has been a productive day at the Harmless office today as the whole team got together to look back on the past months and plan for the future.  Days like today give our staff an important opportunity to reflect on our progress and look at ways we can continue to make a positive difference to the people who access our self harm services.

These are exciting times for Harmless and The Tomorrow Project and at the heart of our vital services are a team of dedicated and passionate professionals who work tirelessly towards helping others, changing attitudes and saving lives.

Although we are relatively small in staff numbers, our reputation and standing continues to grow from strength to strength. Harmless is now a leading voice for self harm not only on a local level, but a national level and we have not got there by chance. It has taken a cohesive and determined team working alongside each other to make a positive difference in the field of self harm and to those accessing our services.

We are all proud of our achievements in the last year and although we can reflect positively on the progress we have made; we know that there is much more hard work to be done. Although the journey will be long, we will continue fighting as a team.

 

Harmless Job Vacancy – Administrative Assistant to support self harm and suicide prevention services

There’s a week left to apply for the position of administrative assistant within the Harmless team. The successful applicant will support the Harmless management team and its self harm services and suicide prevention work. 

Details below:

Job Title: Office administrator for Harmless and its associated projects

Hours: 10 Hours per week + possibility of overtime  (Please note: You must be able to work Wednesdays with an additional afternoon during the week)

Pay: £7.50 per hour

Location: Nottingham (NG1)

Start date: ASAP

Main purpose and scope of the job: To perform general administrative duties and provide clerical/administrative support to Harmless management as required

If you are interest in this job opportunity, please email info@harmless.org.uk for an application form and job description. Applications must be received by close of business on Wednesday 5th March 2014 with interviews Thursday 14th/Friday 15th March 2014.

Self harm in the news

Harmless try to engage in a high level of education about self harm, suicide and suicide prevention. We pride ourselves on giving people with personal experience a voice, but we also exert extreme care in the way that we do things.

You won’t see Harmless contribute to tabloid stories about self harm, despite the coverage that this would give us, not will we compromise on our ethics in the way we contribute to the media.

Recently, with self harm awareness day approaching, there are many stories emerging in the press; stories about self harm that are often graphic, or that describe specific acts of self harm that might be leading or traumatic for a vulnerable reader.

The people who tell their stories, often do so because they want to help, or for the public to sympathise with their story, but unfortunately these stories, unless they follow the strict media guidance, can often cause damage to the innocent reader.

We hope that you will understand our position on media and the way that we do things at harmless. We do not want to sensationalise self harm, or suicide; we do not want to cause harm by ignoring the vulnerability of our readers. Instead we take considerable care in the stories that we tell about self harm, the message of hope that we want to uphold and the integrity in the manner that we do things.

Self Harm Awareness Week – 15% off Harmless resources

In the run up to self harm awareness day on March 1st, Harmless are offering a 15% discount on our self harm resources. From Monday 24th February up until Tuesday 4th March 2014, people interested in our resources can now buy them at special rate:

  • Out of Harm’s Way DVD                        – Normally £27.50 – Special offer: £23.37
  • In our Own Words Book (Hard Copy)    - Normally: £15.49 – Special Offer: £13.16
  • In our Own Words (Electronic Copy)     – Normally £9.99    – Special Offer: £8.49
  • Out of Harm’s Way DVD &                                                                                                                    In Our Own Words Book – Normally £36.49 – Special Offer £31.02
  • Harmless Workbook                                – Normally £24.99 – Special Offer £21.24

(Please note: policy guidance and training are excluded from this offer)

Don’t forget – not only can these resources help promote recovery but  ALL the money we raise through our products and training helps us continue to provide our vital and important services.

To buy one of the items listed above please click here and visit our shop.

Self harm awareness day gives opportunity for individuals and organisations to be more open about self harm in a bid to raise awareness about the issue. As a leading organisation in the field, we  work tirelessly  to  reduce stigma, isolation and distress and promote health, hope and wellbeing; however we know there is still much work to do. We hope that events like self harm awareness day will encourage more people to do the same and take time to listen.

March 1st is an important event in Harmless’ diary and in addition to the free awareness workshops we are delivering on March 3rd, we are also looking to recognise the date in other ways. Keep checking our blog for other ways we are marking the event.

Self-harm is becoming mainstream and no longer secret or taboo; instead it is something to share on blogs, forums and chat rooms, a doctor from a leading rehabilitation clinic has warned.

Dr David Kingsley, the consultant adolescent psychiatrist at Priory Hospital Cheadle Royal, in Cheshire, told The Huffington Post UK self-harm among young people is “noticeably” on the increase.

“It used to be taboo and kept private and secret but now, particularly with the internet and chat rooms, it’s become more public,” he says. “This has meant some people have latched onto it and now use this means of expressing their distress.”

Although there are no official statistics for the number of students who self harm, Kingsley says he has seen an increase among teenagers and “my sense is it’s increased in students and young adults too”.

The tragic deaths of teenagers such as Tallulah Wilson prompted Tumblr to say it would tackle self-harm content on the social networking site, of which there is vast quantities of material.

And Kingsley says the rise in self-harmers is a “big challenge” for universities and colleges.

“I do think universities could be doing a lot more. Most do provide decent pastoral support, there are some who are better than others.”

What’s lacking, Kingsley says, is any sort of work to educate other students about the difficulties of having mental health problems.

“It’s often going to be the case that students with difficulties are going to come to the attention of their peers quite a long time before they access any of the services provided by their university or college.”

“If they get a negative or hostile response from their peers then they’re probably going to be that much less likely to access university services. As a consequence, their difficulties are much more severe by the time they do ask for help or sometimes they might just end up dropping out, rather than being able to get the help they need and carry on with their studies.”

He continues: “Often students are a long way from home and they don’t know the organisation or how they are going to respond.

“So it’s not that the support isn’t there, it’s how universities and colleges get the message out there to students that encourages them to feel comfortable approaching them and they can be confident they can get a positive response.”

According to the Mental Health Foundation, the Uk has one of the highest rates of self-harm in Europe, with 400 per 100,000 people harming themselves. Those with current mental health problems are 20 times more likely than others to report having harmed themselves in the past.

Kingsley adds the problem with academic organisations is students will think they are exposing a weakness to the people who are marking their papers and that it might have a consequence in terms of their degrees.

“It can be difficult for peers to understand too,” he continues. “It can be distressing and concerning about what the level of risks are.”

Anecdotal evidence gathered by HuffPost UK revealed some students are facing stigma when disclosing their mental health issues, including one student says depression is seen as something for goths and emos who have it because its ‘cool’.

“Often self harm isn’t something which is done with suicidal intent but other students or teachers may find it difficult to know where the balance lies about what they need to be getting worried over and what can be managed with local support.

“Someone might think something is quite minor when in fact it can be associated with serious suicidal thinking and be a precursor to something more serious happening later.”

According to Kingsley, the isolation of being at university, particularly for first year students, can make life a lot harder for individuals who are already suffering with mental health problems.

“If you’re in a situation where you feel bullied or abused you don’t have the access to the social network you might have previously had.”

He emphasises the importance of peer support, saying students need to have enough awareness about mental health issues in order to be receptive and take action where necessary.

“It could make the difference between life and death,” Kingsley warns.

“For a lot of young people and teenagers, the first response they get is crucial. Depending on the reaction, potentially the problem goes underground again and they never get the response they need. It’s essential they feel safe to talk about it.”

Tallulah Wilson death: Action urged over self-harm sites

The government has been told it must take action to prevent more teenagers killing themselves after viewing online self-harm sites.

The call is made in the coroner’s report into the death of Tallulah Wilson, a 15-year-old from West Hampstead who died at St Pancras Station in October 2012.

She died after posting self-harm images on networking site Tumblr.

It says more vulnerable young people could die unless there’s a better understanding of the changing way they use the internet and create online personas.

Personal story of recovery is the driving force for self harm fund raising effort for Harmless and the Tomorrow Project

One of Harmless’ brave clients is cycling from London to Paris in 4 days to raise funds for Harmless and the Tomorrow Project. For the first time ever, she is speaking out about her own personal experiences of distress in a bid to reduce stigma about self harm and suicide and to get people talking about mental health.

This is what Deborah has to say about her challenge:

“In April 2014 my husband and I will be cycling 300 miles in 4 days from London to Paris to raise money for Harmless and The Tomorrow Project which Harmless run.

Harmless is an organisation that was set up by people who understand self harm. It provides services for self harm including: support: information: training & consultancy to people who self harm, their friends & families & professionals.

Harmless now deliver a range of services. They previously delivered these under contract with Nottinghamshire Healthcare Trust but these funds were lost due to the financial cuts. However, they still deliver monthly drop in sessions where people can get support and information about self harm and they offer one to one therapy sessions.

The Tomorrow Project is a suicide prevention project that has been set up to support individuals & communities to prevent suicide.

I battled with self harm and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)for 4 years. NHS services were unable to provide any support for me and I was left in a downward spiral of self destruction. By extensive support and care from Caroline Harroe and Harmless I have managed to rebuild my life and see a positive future for myself. Without the support from Harmless I would not be where I am today, I owe my life to this fantastic organisation.

My family and I would be hugely grateful if you would support us in our challenge to raise much needed funds and awareness for Harmless”

Follow this link to find out more, or to make a donation. Please share this link as widely as possible to see if we can smash the £500 target!

Suicide Prevention and Self Harm Support in The Community

The Tomorrow Project has made many contacts with schools and community organisations, sharing the benefits of supporting emotional well being of young people; and reducing the stigma attached to mental health issues and more specifically self harm.

Our aim is to continue to provide an accessible service, providing informal support and information to professionals and young people and parents within the city.

Working in the community is enabling us to reach a greater number of individuals that would otherwise be unable to access our service.

If you are a family member, friend or professional of someone who experiences suicidal thoughts or self harms please contact us; we can advise and help.

Visit the website tomorrowproject.org.uk or email tomorrow@harmless.org.uk

Harmless to deliver free workshops to mark self harm awareness day

To mark self harm awareness day, Harmless are holding a number of free self
harm workshops on Monday 3rd March 2014 aimed at promoting understanding and
awareness of self harm. The workshop will be an opportunity to begin to
think about the issues around self harm and its impact upon us as
professionals.

The workshop shall cover:

*       What self harm is, and who it effects
*       What causes someone to self harm
*       Find out more about Harmless and the work that we do

Workshop Times

  1. Morning Session 9.30am until 11am
  2. Midday Session 11.30am until 1pm
  3. Afternoon Session 1.30pm until 3pm

To book a place on one of our workshops click here

Places are allocated on a first come first served basis and delegates must
book a place via our online shop. Please note: Places are very limited and
only those who have a confirmed booking will be allowed on to our workshop.

The training shall be held on the 4th floor at NCVS, Mansfield Road,
Nottingham. NG1 3FB.

No more than 2 places per organisation per day. Booking should be made under the name of the person attending the workshop. Bookings accepted via our online store only. Terms and condition apply.