Friday, 20 November 2015

Lighting the Way’, a new resource for people bereaved through suicide in South Cork

Siobhan Duggan Community Worker HSE South, Joanne McNamara HAZ HSE and Minister Kathleen Lynch TD.A new resource for families and friends of people bereaved through suicide is now available in South Cork.
‘Lighting the Way South Cork-An information resource for people bereaved through suicide’ was launched in Cork on Friday 13th November, 2015 by Ms. Kathleen Lynch, TD, Minister of State at the Department of Health with responsibility for Mental Health.  
This is a new user friendly information booklet which aims to improve the level of information and support in the community following a death by suicide. The pack was produced by the HSE Cork South Community Work Department in collaboration with the HSE Health Action Zone (HAZ) initiative, An Garda Síochána and steering group members Ballyphehane Action for Youth (BAY), Ballyphehane/Togher Community Development project, Carrigaline Family Support Group, Kinsale Youth Support Service (KYSS),Family Support And Community Wellbeing: Bandon, Mahon Community Development project, Bandon /Kinsale Drug Project-Foróige and Ballincollig Family Resource Centre.
Lighting the Way’ Cork South contains useful information about the range of supports that can be accessed in the community in the aftermath of a suicide, how to make contact with services and what to expect when you do.  The booklet lists national supports such as websites, helpline contact details along with other supports offered locally such as bereavement support groups and training around suicide awareness and prevention.
Welcoming the publication of the new resource, Siobhan Duggan, HSE Community Worker for Cork South said, “We can now offer a solid resource pack to those on the front line who may need to provide support to family or friends of a loved one who has died by suicide. The pack will be used by the Gardaí, health professionals and others who are liaising with people bereaved by suicide. It will provide practical information about accessing supports locally and nationally and it will also be of benefit to other colleagues in the community as a signposting resource and information pack.”
Launching the new resource, Ms. Kathleen Lynch T.D., Minister of State in the Department of Health with responsibility for Mental Health said, “The development of a user-friendly resource pack with identified supports, both local and national, for those bereaved through suicide as well as information on the process involved after the death is an excellent model of partnership in action. I am delighted the HSE Community Work Department, Health Action Zone (HAZ), An Garda Siochana and all the voluntary organizations have joined forces yet again to help and support families who have been bereaved by suicide”
Gerry Raleigh, Director of the National Office for Suicide Prevention (NOSP)said, “Although the effects of suicide on the bereaved can be similar to other forms of death, they can also differ in a number of ways. For the suicide bereaved, making sense of the death, coping with the feelings of rejections, anger, guilt and disbelief can be even greater issues. The most important factor in healing from a loss is having the support of other people. This directory identifies the choices people have within their Community to aid and assist them having been bereaved by suicide.”
‘Lighting the Way’ was developed in response to specific actions outlined in the Reach Out: Ireland National Strategy for Action on Suicide prevention 2005 - 2014. This strategy emphasised the provision of support to An Gardaí Síochána who are often the first to be called to the scene of a suspected suicide. Lighting the Way is designed to be multi functional and used through a range of services locally and nationally including An Gardaí Síochána, HSE frontline staff, community services listed within the resource itself as well as various national and city/county wide services in the provision of information and support to those bereaved by suicide.
Connecting for Life: Ireland’s new National Strategy to Reduce Suicide 2015 - 2020 has a vision which also encompasses and emphasises the continued support of persons, families and communities bereaved through suicide.Lighting the Way continues to be an important support resource to all those affected by a bereavement through suicide.

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