Today (September 10th 2015) marks the observation of World Suicide Prevention Day. According to WHO, suicide accounts for nearly half of all violent deaths in the world and is the second leading cause of death among 15–29-year-olds. The International Association for Suicide Prevention (IASP) collaborated with the World Health Organization (WHO) and the World Federation for Mental Health to provide worldwide commitment and action to prevent suicides, with various activities around the world. This year the World Suicide Prevention Day theme is ‘Reaching Out: Preventing Suicide and Saving Lives’.
The International Association for Suicide Prevention (IASP) created a World Wide event initiative encouraging everyone to light a candle near a window at 8pm this evening to show support and remember a loved one:
Here’s an interesting infograph on suicide from the WHO:
According to the WHO, It is estimated that around 30% of global suicides are due to pesticide self-poisoning, most of which occur in rural agricultural areas in low- and middle-income countries. Other common methods of suicide are hanging and firearms.
Suicide prevention is a challenging task. Unfortunately, only a few countries include suicide prevention among their health priorities and only 28 countries report having a national suicide prevention strategy. The prevention of suicide has not been adequately addressed due to a lack of awareness of suicide as a major public health problem and the taboo in many societies to openly discuss it. Raising community awareness and breaking down the taboo is important for countries to make progress in preventing suicide.
So tonight at 8pm in whatever timezone you’re in, light up a candle in support of suicide prevention!