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Minister for Mental Health Backs Suicide Bereavement Campaign
irish social forum |
Thursday March 20, 2008 16:17 by Console Snowdrop - Console
Console's Snowdrop Campaign in aid of Ireland's Suicide Bereaved will be back by the Minister for Mental Health.
The Minister for Mental Health, Dr. Jimmy Devins T.D. has announced that he will be supporting a major national campaign to raise awareness and funds for suicide bereavement.
Minister Devins will officially launch Console’s National Snowdrop Campaign in aid of Ireland’s Suicide Bereaved next Thursday, 27th March 2008 at 12.30pm.
The Snowdrop campaign aims to raise awareness and funds for counseling services for the thousands of people in whose lives have been torn apart by suicide in this country.
Every suicide has a serious impact on at least six people, and with an average 500 suicides per annum in this country, there are very few residents in Ireland who have not in some way, been touched by the knock on effects of such a tragic death.
Console’s Snowdrop Campaign is vital to raise funds to provide the very specific type of suicide bereavement counseling services that are unique to this form of bereavement.
The campaign also aims to raise awareness and reduce the stigma associated with suicide in Ireland. Over the last few decades, and in particular since the decriminalization of suicide in Ireland just 15 years, Irish Society has become much more understanding and informed about suicide.
There is still a long way to go in terms of letting people know that there is help out there and encouraging them to seek help. Paul Kelly from Console says, in their experience very few people who take their lives actually want to die.
“They just can’t bear the pain and if they would just pickup the phone and call ourselves or other organizations like Aware or the Samaritans, they could find a lot of help and support”.
The Snowdrop campaign, which Minister Devin will launch next Thursday and will continue until the end of April 2008 sees the introduction of annual national Snowdrop Days where the public will be encouraged to support the important cause by purchasing a snowdrop pin as a symbol of hope for €3.
For people who may not have the opportunity to purchase the pin during that period, Console has also launched a special mobile phone text number. The public can make a donation to Console’s Snowdrop campaign by texting “SNOW” to 57030 for a one off cost of €2.50, proceeds of which will go directly to the Console Snowdrop campaign.
Major retailers, Dunnes Stores and Marks and Spencers as well as a host of businesses throughout the country will be supporting Console’s Snowdrop Campaign by selling snowdrop pins in all of their retail outlets in Ireland from launch day until the end of April 2008.
Console was established in 2002 by families that had experienced the grief of losing a loved one through suicide to help the thousands of people whose lives were torn apart by the devastation of this loss.
Since its foundation, Console has developed into a professional organisation, responding to the needs of those bereaved through suicide within the community. Console is a national service with offices in Dublin, Galway, Limerick and Waterford.
A host of high profile figures have come on board to support Console’s Snowdrop Campaign and these names will be announced over the coming weeks.
Major retailers, Dunnes Stores and Marks and Spencers will be supporting Console’s Snowdrop Campaign by selling snowdrop pins in all of their retail outlets in Ireland from launch day until the end of April 2008.