The Victorian Bushfires have had an incredible impact on people all
over Australia, and indeed, the world. The ferocity of the fires, the
devastation to property and the huge loss of life has all been headline
news. Time and again on all the reports, survivors of the fire would
remark that you can always rebuild but what was important was that they
still had their life.
Life is precious. I think we can sometimes take that for granted. The loss of one life when it was preventable becomes a tragedy.
Suicide is a largely preventable cause of death that goes largely undetected. Suicide is often kept secret, as there is still a stigma attached to it. A lot of people don't recognize the amount of suicide in our communities. Currently, suicide deaths in Australia number more than those who die by motor vehicle accidents. More people die by suicide than die in all the armed conflicts in the world.
Again, some people think it is only young people who suicide, although suicide accounted for nearly one-fifth of all deaths amongst young men aged 20 to 34. However, the largest numbers of suicide are in the 30 to 44 age group. 78% of all people who complete suicide are men, although more women attempt suicide.
Because of the silence that surrounds suicide, we are not informed enough on how to be alert to warning signs, what can protect people and the supports that are available in the community.
Help is at hand! Lifeline's RISC Co-ordinator (Responding to Issues of Suicide in Cooloola) will be running an ASIST (Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training) on April 20 and 21. The 2-day workshop will be run in the office building of the Wesleyan Church, Exhibition Rd, Southside from 8:30 to 4:30. There is a cost of $50 for the training which includes a handbook and other materials, lunch for the 2 days and morning and afternoon tea. You must register beforehand, as numbers are limited.
ASIST is an internationally recognized program that is seen as suicide first aid -- the intervention you can provide until you can get someone more appropriate assistance. The workshop was run successfully last year in the Mary Valley (see photo) and is something that both Community Workers and general members of the community should attend.
Other dates for the year are August 26 and 27 on the Cooloola Coast and October 13 and 14 back in Gympie.
If you are interested in more information or to register for ASIST please call Ruth Polley on 5480 3400.
Bushfires remind us of what is important
Location: Wesleyan Church, Exhibition Rd, Southside
Date Detail: April 20th and 21st - 8:30 am to 4:30 pm
Event Cost: $50 which includes the 2 day workshop, a handbook and other materials, lunch, morning and afternoon tea each day
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