Self harm and suicide prevention starts here

The theme of our 3rd annual conference is self harm and suicide prevention starts here.

Thursday 1st March 2018.

Harmless recognises that self harm and suicide effects a broad range of individuals, facing many diverse experiences; reducing the number of individuals that self harm requires contributions from across society and includes education, prevention, intervention and postvention work.

This exciting new event will bring together private, public, voluntary and community sector organisations, individuals with lived experience of self harm and practitioners & academics in the field of self harm in an ethos of joint working and shared experience.

Our conference is themed around five strategic areas:

·         Collaborative partnership,

·         Service user representation,

·         Effective practice,

·         Driving change &

·         Overcoming stigma and discrimination.

£150 per delegate place*


2 delegate places for £200*


Click HERE for more info and to book tickets.

Self Harm Conference, From Harm to Hope – 1st March 2018 – 2 delegates for £200

Our 3rd annual national conference with this year’s theme of ‘self harm: suicide prevention starts here’.

£150 per place 
2 places for £200*

Our conference gathers together leading academics and experts in the fields of self harm and suicide…one not to miss.

Please book early to take advantage of our ticket offer. Places are £150, or 2 for £200, excluding Eventbrite booking fees. We also offer discounted tickets for charities and students – to book these please click HERE or call our office directly on 0115 880 0280.

From Harm to Hope: Introducing the Speakers

Claire Dixon…

Claire has been a specialist trainer with Harmless since November 2016. She previously coordinated and delivered healthy relationship work in secondary schools for domestic abuse prevention charity Equation.

Claire volunteered with Samaritans for five years as a listening volunteer, trainer, and coordinator for HMP Nottingham’s Listeners Scheme.

Claire’s passion for training in this sector comes through experience working with young people and schools, as well as personal experience of self harm, suicide and mental health problems. Through training, she hopes to further promote awareness and challenge stigma around self harm, mental health and suicide.

Click HERE to book your space and avoid disappointment. 

From Harm to Hope

Harmless’ third national self harm conference will be held on Thursday 1st March 2018, Self Harm Awareness Day. This year’s theme is ‘self harm: suicide prevention starts here’.


Self harm conference

£150 per delegate place


2 places for £200

Themes for the day

– Driving change

– Collaborative partnership

– Service user representation

– Effective practice

– Overcoming stigma & discrimination

Speakers Include:

Professor Louis Appleby

Sarah Kessling (Harmless)

Claire Dixon (Harmless)

Mental Health Today

Pam Burrows

Naomi Watkins & Alex Parkin

Marie Armstrong

Sarah Fairbank

Gloucestershire Public Health


Click HERE for tickets

Self Harm Conference – 1st March 2018 – Tickets now on sale

From Harm to Hope – Self Harm Conference

Thursday 1st March 2018
Nottingham Conference Centre

£150 per delegate, or 2 for £200*

Click here to book tickets:…

We are pleased to announce that Harmless’ third national self harm conference will be held on Thursday 1st March 2018, Self Harm Awareness Day. This year’s theme is ‘self harm: suicide prevention starts here’.

As in previous years, the conference will be shaped around the following five strategic areas:

Collaborative partnership,

Service user representation,

Effective practice,

Driving change,

Overcoming stigma and discrimination.

Our conference gathers together leading academics and experts in the fields of self harm and suicide. Speakers already confirmed:

Professor Louis Appleby, who leads the National Suicide Prevention Strategy for England.

We will be confirming all speakers, workshops, and our agenda closer to the event. Please book early to take advantage of our ticket offer.

Click here to book tickets:…

*Excluding Eventbrite booking fees. We also offer discounted tickets for charities and students – to book these please call our office directly on 0115 880 0280.

From Harm to Hope: Introducing the Speakers

Alex Parkin…

Alex has 4 years’ experience working previously in nurseries and schools within Lincoln, having developed a passion for working with children with Special Educational Needs, Alex knew this is where she wanted to work. Alex has worked in children’s and adult’s residential settings for two years, providing daily support to them in a home from home setting.

Alex recently returned to education and completed her BSc Hons Degree in Health and Social care at Lincoln University, during her time at Lincoln University Alex started volunteering for local organisations within the care sector. Where she met Naomi Watkins, Alex worked alongside Naomi for over a year teaching Domestic Abuse workshops to young people and teachers. As well as providing nurture groups for young children within schools.

Alex found her passion working with children and young people, whilst supporting them with various topics. Alex began by providing one to one support work with young people, since then Alex has developed a passion to run support groups for young people in Domestic Abuse relationships and for Young Parents.

Since graduating in May 2017, Alex became the Co-founder of NWCH CIC alongside Naomi, a new and unique counselling hub in Lincoln, set up to support and help people within the local community following Alex’s passion.

Click HERE to book your space and avoid disappointment. 

Charity Tuesday

Today is Charity Tuesday! As we approach the end of the working day (for most), why not finish off by supporting our life-saving suicide prevention work? You could start up a fundraiser, make a one-off donation or monthly transfer, host a bake sale, or even take part in a sponsored run. The possibilities are endless! By providing this support, you will be helping us to save more lives.

Let’s make this week’s Charity Tuesday one to remember. Become a lifesaver and support us today!

Join our wonderful supporters and make a regular donation that can save lives!

We hope to gather ten new regular donors to become our life saving supporters. Can you help?

If ten people give £5 a month we can reach 24 more people in crisis.

24 more lives saved.

24 families who still have their loved ones.

Could you spare £5 a month?

Help us reach our target of ten new supporters. You can sign up here:

‘When I needed help, I couldn’t find it anywhere. I called a helpline but they just listened. I had totally given up on my life and wanted to die. When I found the help I needed through these guys I can honestly say that they saved my life when I saw no other way out’

This work in suicide prevention makes me so angry.

Yesterday we posted about the birth of the tomorrow project and the loss of life that led to our work being in existence. I wrote about the tragedy of suicide and the pain that I have seen amongst families and communities that have been deeply and devastatingly affected by suicide.

Did you know that those affected by suicide are 80% more likely to go on to attempt to take their own life too? Neither did I, when I started this work. And yet now, day in day out our service takes referral after referral from those who are thinking about taking their life, and those bereaved by suicide.

Me and my team listen to the stories of struggle. We hear stories of pain. We hear stories too often of people who have tried and tried to get help but there is none until they walk through our door.

And here we are, with the government referring to us as a model of best practice, with our local services referring people to us to the point that our service is drowning in referrals, with people screaming out for help. Yet we are still without funding.

It makes me so angry – this post is not about funding, it is about the lack of resources that are being allocated to distress. It is about the fact that by virtue of the fact that we struggle to stay afloat, we know, without fail, that there is a crisis of funding that threatens to take us away from the people that need us the most.

As the CEO of a service, I want to spend my time doing a good job for the people that need me; I don’t want to be fighting the nonsense that prevails in this world. People are dying and I can’t get enough people to care to keep our service afloat.

I don’t want to ask for donations and funding support, but I have to. I just have to, because without it, without us raising another 30k by the spring, some services will be threatened.

This work makes me so cross, because the economic cost of one death by suicide is 1.7 million, and my service runs on peanuts in comparison. Do the math. Save a life, save money… if that’s the only thing people will listen to then that is the line that I will take and if the meantime you’ve got a quid in your pocket and you can do without an extra costs, chuck it our way? Or short of that, if you feel like doing something ridiculous like shaving your head, or throwing yourself out of a plane for us, or you know a rich millionaire… give them a nudge because we need a bit of help.

Rant over. A disgruntled CEO.


The Old, the Good and the New

2017 has been a busy year for the training operating arm of Harmless. It has also been a year for great change.

I would like to start the new year by thanking all of those who we have worked with over the past year. In particular I would like to thank Nottingham City Council for the amazing partnership we had in providing the citizens of Nottingham with FREE training in line with the Mental health Crisis Care Concordat.

I would also like to thank Martyn Swaby & Naomi Watkins for their support, helping to make training sessions fuller and more accessible by providing suitable venues for us to deliver training in throughout the year.

We have also started a new partnership with Kirklees City Council delivering Mental Health First Aid courses which will continue this year.

Having worked as a Specialist Trainer, it was earlier this year that the torch was passed on and I took on the role as Training Team Leader, with our dear Sophie Allen departing to pastures new. Further to this, we also excitingly welcomed Claire fully into the Harmless family as she became our full time Specialist Trainer. As well as Claire we have also welcomed into the fold, Val, Caron, Kayleigh and Wendy all amazingly talented trainers.

However, this was not to be the only change for Let’s Talk Training. As many of you will now be aware Harmless has moved to its own building. This provided many new opportunities for us including some extra space for training sessions as well as our own office to spread into.

Some of my personal favourite moments last year included celebrating Harmless’ 10-year anniversary, getting to meet Professor Rory O’Connor at our annual conference and continuing to meet so many amazing people.

Lots of people I speak with always tell me they don’t know how I could be a Trainer because it’s scary and you have to know everything but my most favourite thing about being a Trainer isn’t the facilitating it’s getting the opportunity to meet so many hard working and inspiring individuals who want to save lives and make a difference.

In 2017, we delivered approximately 80 courses that’s over 5,000 people trained. As a result, our training reached over 30,000 individuals. To see these stats inspires hope and I know we can only continue to grow and build on these successes.

With 2018 already begun I am eager to get stuck in and see what another year brings. I shall leave you with a small taste for some of the exciting things we have install so far this year….

7th&8th February Adult Mental Health First Aid (MHFA)- Lincoln

1st March From Harm to Hope, Self harm Conference- Nottingham

20th March Level 2 Self harm and working with Self harm- Nottingham

10th & 11th April Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training – Nottingham

To book places or for more details please visit Eventbrite (search term Harmless), call us on 0115 880 0281 or email us on