Supporting young adults with cancer
By Ceinwen Giles,
Many people think that suicide mainly affects older adults, but in the last 10 years there has been a rise in the number of younger people driven to end their own lives by suicide for various reasons. According to the Office for National Statistics, suicide is the leading cause of death for 5-19-year-olds and 200 school children a year end their lives by suicide. We need to address this issue and preventative work needs to take precedent.
"Everyone should receive Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training, so we can prevent more people ending their lives by suicide." - Naomi Watkins-Ligudzinska, Fellow
Following my Fellowship trip to Australia and New Zealand, together with my own experience of working with young people, I am campaigning to see the following recommendations to be implemented at a regional and national level in the UK:
NW Counselling Hub, where I am CEO, launched The Willow Project in 2021, with the aim of addressing suicidal ideation in young people and young adults aged 4-30 years old. We are a counselling hub in Lincoln that receives referrals from a large number of young people and young adults who are suicidal, who have little or no support. I want our service to feel confident in addressing suicide ideation, preventing suicide in young people and supporting their families to spot the signs and provide support accordingly.
We run group therapy, workshops and 1-2-1 therapy for young people who have suicidal ideation or intention. We are developing a mental health toolkit for postvention, for young people accessing our service, which can be rolled out nationally.
Young people feel valued and heard and supported by their peers in The Willow Project. We increase beneficiaries’ resilience against mental ill-health and reduce their reliance on NHS services by:
I would like to encourage policy makers to take our findings and research seriously and increase the funding nationally for suicide prevention, intervention and postvention. This will enable organisations to implement projects and support systems that already work and to create lasting change in their communities across the UK.
I would like schools to take suicide prevention more seriously and to invest in services to help teachers.
Everyone should receive Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training (ASIST), so we can prevent more people ending their lives by suicide.
The views and opinions expressed by any Fellow are those of the Fellow and not of the Churchill Fellowship or its partners, which have no responsibility or liability for any part of them.
By Ceinwen Giles,
By Alison Broady,
By Allison Sykes,