Community urged to join together to raise suicide awareness
THE Antrim community is being urged to turn out and support two events being held in the coming days to raise awareness of suicide.
A health and well-being event is to take place at Parkhall Youth Centre next Monday night, January 14 from 6.30pm to 9pm.
The event is billed as being for all the community, with all ages welcome.
There will be an exhibition of local health and well-being support services.
There will also be three seminars on the night focussing on bereavement support, drugs and substances, and mental health and well-being.
Meanwhile, a public meeting has been organised for this Saturday at the Dunadry Hotel at 2pm.
Everyone is welcome to attend the meeting, with various suicide awareness groups, councillors, local MLAs, as well as parents and young people all invited to attend.
On the meeting’s events page on Facebook it states: “This is a meeting open to everyone and anyone who wants to offer their help and services to the people of Antrim town in the wake of the tragic events in recent months.
“We must tackle this issue of depression and suicide together so please come even just to stand in support.”
Following a number of recent deaths in the local community over the last number of months, local people have taken to social networking sites to voice their concern over what is being done locally to try and prevent further deaths.
Such has been the public outcry on Facebook in trying to raise awareness of groups providing support to those affected by suicide, a new Antrim group has been set up.
Antrim Together - which was only set up at the weekend and has already received over 450 ‘likes’ on its Facebook page - has been set up by a group of concerned parents, families and friends.
The page aims to be a platform to promote and raise awareness of services, charities, events, and support to tackle depression.
The page states: “Big charities to small charities, big services to small services, we’re all the same!
“We’re here to fight for those in need. Let’s be a voice together! No more excuses. Let’s get that information out there. And to those out there who think they’re alone and have no one to talk to, we’re here to help you.
“We’re all in this together.”
Local councillor Brian Graham has been voceferous in his support of all the efforts being made locally to raise awareness of the support available to those affected by suicide.
“Whilst I raised the issue of suicide in the borough at the December meeting of Antrim Borough Council, urgent communication is now needed with the relevant authorities to get the taking of one’s own life put high on the agenda,” Cllr. Graham said.
He added: “I have been contacted by members of the public since I raised the issue.
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“As an elected representative I feel it is my duty to help anybody in any way I can no matter what the issue is.”
Cllr. Graham also praised the efforts of those behind the Antrim Together Facebook page.
“As a locally elected councillor can I congratulate those individuals who took it upon themselves to take this on board,” Cllr. Graham said.
He added: “The amount of information currently on the page just doesn’t happen without the dedication and no doubt the interest of the subject of those concerned.
“We also have to remember those who have been bereaved through suicide in recent times in Antrim and beyond and hopefully this Facebook page will go some way in bringing the people of Antrim Together.”
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Weather for Antrim
Thursday 20 June 2013
Temperature: 12 C to 17 C
Wind Speed: 12 mph
Wind direction: South east
Temperature: 12 C to 16 C
Wind Speed: 10 mph
Wind direction: West