Harmless Job Vacancy – Office administrator to support self harm and suicide prevention services

Would you like to join the Harmless team? We are currently looking to recruit an administrative assistant to support its self harm and suicide prevention work.

Details below:

Job Title: Office administrator for Harmless and its associated projects

Hours: 10 Hours per week minimum  (Please note: You must be able to work Wednesdays with additional hours over 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 26th March 2014 with interviews Monday 31st March 2014.

Childhood impact on youth suicide rate

Teenagers who have negative experiences in childhood are often more at risk of suicide or self-harm, a report released on Monday has warned.

The Still Vulnerable report contains recommendations for better support and protection of young people at risk of suicide.

More NI young people take their lives than in other parts of the UK.

Children’s Commission Patricia Lewsley-Mooney said the document raised a number of important issues.

“Suicide is a complex phenomenon and unfortunately there is no single solution,” she said.

“Services and support should be provided on an individual basis, from an early stage and delivered in a sustained and co-ordinated manner to limit negative life experiences.”

The commissioner said there was a need for parents, carers, community groups and friends to look out for and act if they had concerns about a young person.

“Every professional in children’s social care, health, education and criminal justice services must be trained and supported to identify children who are vulnerable, such as those suffering from depression, and be more responsive in addressing their needs,” Ms Lewsley-Mooney said.

“I will be working with various government ministers and departments, with responsibility for these agencies, to present these recommendations and will highlight the importance of implementing them into work practice.”

Self Harm Drop In Service – Additional Dates Confirmed

After a successful re-launch of our drop in service last year, we are pleased to announce that we have added some more dates:

  • Wednesday 2nd April 2014 14.30-15.30 – Young person’s drop in (Ages 11-21)
  • Wednesday 7th May 2014 14.30-15.30 – Adult’s drop in (Ages 18+)
  • Wednesday 4th June 2014 14.30-15.30 – Young person’s drop in (Ages 11-21)
  • Wednesday 2nd July  14.30-15.30 – Adult’s drop in (Ages 18+)

Location: All drop ins will take place at the Nottingham Community and Voluntary Service building, on Mansfield Road, Nottingham. NG1 3FB. (Opposite House of Fraser)

The drop in service is run by Adrienne and Val, who are both trained therapists here at Harmless. Each month, they will on hand to offer a friendly face and provide information about Harmless, our self harm services, or to just talk about any concerns that you may have about self harm. Remember, this service is confidential .

This  service is for anyone and not just for those who self harm. If you have concerns about someone else such as a family member or a colleague then please feel free to join us. If it makes you more at ease, bring along someone who you can trust such as a friend.

We encourage all those wanting to access our drop ins to make the most of this important service.  Harmless want to continue to provide such opportunities for people but unless they are used, it is likely they will be cancelled and our resources will be distributed elsewhere.

For more information, please email info@harmless.org.uk


Self Harm and Young People Training 20th March

Due to the success of the last Self Harm and Young People training day, Harmless are holding another course on Thursday 20th March.

The training will concentrate on self harm from the perspective of young people and is suitable for anyone who works with young people or who may come in to contact with young people who self harm or at risk of self harm.

The day will cover:

  • What self harm is, and who it effects
  • What causes young people to self harm and some of the myths around self harm
  • What can be done to support and help young people who self harm
  • Managing the impact of self harm as an individual and a workplace
  • Useful interventions for working with young people who self harm and promoting empowerment
  • Managing and assessing risk

The training will be held at the Harmless offices at the Nottingham Community and Voluntary Service from 9:30am-4pm.

100% of candidates that attended the last training said that the Training developed their understanding of self harm and will enable them to do their jobs more effectively.

Candidates said :

“[This was] excellent training and offered a real practical application to my job.”   

“The training delivered a realistic understanding and perspective. A knowledgeable and interesting session taught by a vibrant and informative teacher.”

For more information and to book a place on our Self Harm and Young People training day, click here.



Harmless and Tomorrow Project team attend NICE conference to promote our self harm and suicide prevention services

Yesterday, representatives of Harmless and The Tomorrow Project attended the Nottinghamshire Healthcare NICE conference 2014. The team held a stall which was set up to provide clinicians from across Nottinghamshire with information about our services and the work we do around self harm and suicide prevention.

Events such as those held yesterday are a valuable opportunity to network with professional from the local area and to promote our services. Supporting professionals is an important aspect of our work; many of those who attended yesterday are likely to have a significant influence on a person’s recovery and well being. However, self harm is a complex issue and it is not always easy to support someone on your own or without help.

We believe that seeking the right support and training from organisations such as Harmless and The Tomorrow Project is a vital first step for those who work with people that self harm or at risk of self harm. In doing so, individuals can develop confidence, understanding and skills that can positively influence the life and health of someone who self harms or is affected by suicide.

For more information on our work with professionals please click here 

Some organisations claim bullying is a major contributor to self harm in young people- what do you think?

A large survey looking into why young people self-harm has revealed that being bullied is the main reason they first injure themselves.

The online poll, carried out by four self-harm support groups, also found most youngsters were feeling alone when they first self-harmed.

Nearly 4,000 under-25s who have self-harmed responded to the survey.

Experts say the changing nature of childhood is increasing the likelihood of people self-harming.

The survey was carried out online by Self-harm.co.uk, ChildLine, Youth Net and Young Minds.

Rachel Welch, from Self-harm.co.uk, said the findings offered a useful insight into the problem.

“Self-harm is an expression of how someone is feeling, it’s not the problem itself, an expression of a very difficult emotional distress.

“We’ve got into the habit of focusing on what young people are doing, cutting or burning, and we’re forgetting it’s the underlying issue we need to be digging into.”

Bullying is nothing new of course, but what is new is that it now does not necessarily stop at the doorstep, added Ms Welch.

“They can’t escape to their bedrooms away from bullying, because with smartphones and tablets they’re never actually on their own.”

‘Venting frustration’

Sixteen-year-old Chloe can relate to the findings. After years of being bullied, she started self-harming when she was 14.

“You just get to a point where you need to do something about it, and its just a way of venting your frustration. I was thinking, ‘If you can hurt me on the inside, why can’t I hurt myself on the outside?’

“It was replacing emotional pain with physical pain.”

Chloe was self-harming for about 18 months, up to seven days a week.

“Pretty much whenever I had a really bad day at school, which was most days, I’d think I need to vent my frustrations.

“I’d come home, go straight to my room and I’d just stay in my room all night, I wouldn’t want to associate with people.”

Chloe is now receiving help from the charity Harmless.

Growing problem

The rise in the number of charities that support people who self-harm has prompted debate as to whether there is a genuine rise in the problem or whether the public is more aware of it.

Dr Alys Cole-King, who speaks on the issue for the Royal College of Psychiatrists, is in no doubt that the problem is on the rise.

“Research has shown that self-harm has increased recently, that in particular self-cutting has increased and we know from research that there is some contagion effect from that.”

The research she refers to includes figures from the NHS in England which show that 11% more young people were admitted to hospital having self-harmed in 2012 than in the previous year.

“The long-term trends are actually down but in recent years, the rates in young men have increased. It seems likely it might be related to the wider economic conditions.”

What is happening in the UK is happening in other developed parts of the world too, where the pressures on children to look a certain way and to perform academically are changing the nature of adolescence.

Where the UK is different is that more black and Asian teenage girls self-harm here than in other countries. A cultural reluctance to talk through their problems explains the difference, say experts.


Having the courage to seek help is the first step in dealing with the problem.

Chloe, who has been receiving counselling for more than a year now, says it has changed her whole outlook on life.

“There’s always a light at the end of the tunnel. A lot of the time I couldn’t see it and I was like, this is never going to end. But it does. All you need to do is get the right help.”

With the right support, most people who self-harm can be helped to deal with the underlying problems that cause them to injure themselves.

However, inappropriate care – and research suggests even hospitals are still guilty of that – can have long-term consequences.

Studies show that people who self-harm and are admitted to hospital are up to 100 times more likely to kill themselves than the general population.

Self Harm Training: Cyber-Bullying

Cyber-bullying is a growing concern, not just in the context of self harm but the general well-being of our young people.

Harmless are delivering a Cyber-bullying training session on Thursday 13th March.


The Challenge Facing the Next Generation

– How can we preserve the emotional wellbeing and mental health of out future?

Thursday 13th March 2014

What this workshop provides?

It is now estimated that over a billion people use Facebook across the globe with other social media sites such as Twitter and You Tube (and many more) now playing a major part in most of our everyday lives. Although some will argue that social media is a positive phenomenon, this workshop will highlight the challenges that face our young people who now have instant access to an increasing number of social sites.

Our training aims to raise awareness and understanding of the issues facing the next generation. It will explore cyber-bullying from the perspective of a young person and the potentially dangerous consequences that social media can have on those who access it. The growing use of apps and smart phones now means most young people have instant access to the internet and social sites 24 hours a day 7 days a week. Do we really know what our children are accessing online and the potential risks involved?

Learning outcomes:

·         We will look at a number of popular social media sites and how they work and the potential risks involved

·         Explore dangers such as online bullying and the links to suicide and self harm

·         Discussion on the importance placed by young people on online ‘life’

·         Highlight the dangers of anonymity

·         There will also be some opportunity to explore other issues around cyber-bullying and ask questions

To find more information and book a place on this training, click here

Self harm work with parents and teachers

Harmless and the Emotional Health and Wellbeing Team have been running a number of self-harm awareness sessions funded in the Rushcliffe area. Sessions have been delivered to both teachers in schools in the Borough of Rushcliffe and to parents whose children self harm.
Yesterday was the final parents session to be delivered. These sessions are alway tough as the content of the sessions is highly emotive and relevant to those attending. As a trainer I praise all the parents who attended to gain a better understanding of self harm and thereby how to support their loved one better. The informal feedback at the end of the sessions is both humbling and rewarding and is what pushes us on to continue raising awareness of self harm.

If we can help one parent understand self harm, or one teacher know how to get help for a self harming pupil, then it is worth every minute spent training.

Harmless deliver free self harm workshops for self harm awareness day

Yesterday at Harmless three free, 1.5hr self harm taster sessions were delivered for Self harm awareness day. All the sessions were well attended and had a diverse group of participants from uni students, to mental health workers/practitioners and teachers to name a few. Though their job roles were very different the common factor was clients who self harm and the lack of self harm training in the workplace.

The sessions covered:

– statistics on self harm

– defining self harm

– why individuals turn to self harm

-the functions of self harm

The delivery was a mixture of PowerPoint, small/full group discussions and a quiz!

Our trainer, Satveer said: “It was a tiring day, but made worthwhile when participants take the time out to thank you before they leave.”

Self harm is an issue in every area, in every school and profession. It does not discriminate. Training, whether it be a self harm taster session or a half/full day self harm course can help towards eradicating stigma and increasing knowledge and confidence. All of which are of benefit to the individual who is self harming.


Find out more about what training we have on offer at http://www.harmless.org.uk/store/Harmless-Training


Helping people that self harm

Many people do things that they know are harmful to themselves to help them to cope with difficult emotions or experiences. This might be eating or drinking too much or taking drugs. Sometimes people intentionally harm themselves for the same reasons.

If someone trusts you enough to confide in you about their self-harm, you can start to help them immediately. First, honour their trust in you by showing them kindness, love and compassion. Second, help them get the support they need by asking their permission to contact Harmless on their behalf. Reassure the person that you’ll come with them, even if they’re over 18.

Our contact details are info@harmless.org.uk or you can make a referral by contacting 0115 9348445.