Suicide support in Hargreaves Mall

A MEMORIAL quilt created to raise awareness of suicide will be displayed in Hargreaves Mall today. 

Suicide Prevention Awareness Network committee members will run an information stand outside Officeworks in the mall from 1pm to 3pm to promote Sunday’s second annual Bendigo Suicide Awareness Walk.

Work-related grief support family service co-ordinator Bette Phillips said counsellors would be available to talk with people.

“Last year we had around about 24 people come to the mall and talk to us about suicide,” she said.

“As a community we need to talk about suicide and become more knowledgeable when it comes to looking for signs.”

Ms Phillips said there were a number of warning signs connected with suicide and people should be aware of the symptoms. 

She said those who decide to take their lives often experienced a state of heightened euphoria immediately beforehand. 

Ms Phillips said work was a common factor causing suicide and she urged workplaces to undergo suicide prevention training. 

“It is really important that workplaces take part in suicide prevention training,” she said.

“At last year’s walk at least four families connected with us and said work had played a significant role (in leading to suicide).”

Registrations for Sunday’s Suicide Awareness Walk will take place from 10am at the Dai Gum San Chinese precinct.

SPAN Central Victoria co-ordinator Alannah McGregor said about 350 to 450 people attended the walk last year and she hoped to see more people this year. 

“A lot of people have been calling me and letting me know that they are going to bring family members along with them,” she said.

Those seeking help or who are concerned about a loved one should contact Lifeline on 13 11 14, Kids Helpline on 1800 551 800 or MensLine Australia on 1300 789 978.

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