START, a leading mental health charity, says that suicide is the biggest killer of men under fifty and is targeting the Hacienda Generation in its efforts to save lives being lost to suicide. To this end START will be remembering the lives of those we have lost to suicide and supporting those left behind with its annual Vigil & Procession of Remembrance on World Suicide Prevention Day on 10th September in Salford.
It is men born in 1970s and 1980s Britain, the house music Hacienda Generation, that are being hit hard with men from this generation dying in greater numbers by suicide or drug poisoning than any other age group as shown by Office of National Statistics data for England and Wales.
Over the years we have lost countless lives to suicide including Manchester icons from ‘Joy Divisions’ Ian Curtis and ‘Inspiral Carpets’ Craig Gill through to our family members, friends, neighbours and loved ones. Suicide isn’t a forgone conclusion, an inevitable fact of life, it is preventable. It is the stigma, the fear of being judged that stops not just the men from the Hacienda Generation, but all of us, reaching out for support when we need it and sadly when we see it in others.
If you do one thing this World Suicide Prevention Day make it a statement about suicide. Either through posting on social media that your there for anyone who is in need of support or start a conversation with a loved one who you are worried about or attend events like STARTs Vigil & Procession of Remembrance. Any of these small gestures could be all it takes for one of your loved ones to see that they are not alone and that they can ask you for support and give you the chance to save their life.
Yvonne Shelton, principle vocalist from Hacienda Classical said “it is important that we reach out to help anyone that needs support, the families and friends left behind are suffering with this type of loss and the consequences it brings. Let’s give them a moment and a platform to celebrate the memories of their loved ones lost to suicide.”
“I am performing at STARTs Vigil & Procession of Remembrance to raise awareness that suicide is a rising epidemic, and for us as a community to be silent about it is almost like co-signing their death certificates. Let’s show them love and support as we all have a role to play in preventing suicide” she added.
Dennis Baldwin, Project Manager at START said “We can all make changes that will have a direct impact on these statistics and we can save lives. If each and everyone one of us on World Suicide Prevention Day make a public statement, like joining our vigil and procession of remembrance, it will send a loud clear message that we are here to support any of our friends, family and loved ones who are in need. We can start to change how people who are in need and having thoughts of killing themselves feel about asking for support. Making it more accepted and encouraged it will save lives being lost to suicide”.
Yvonne will be performing as part of START Vigil & Procession of Remembrance on World Suicide Prevention Day, 6.00pm – 8.00pm, Tuesday 10th September, which will see members of the public uniting at Starts Wellbeing Centre before the Vigil & Procession of Remembrance commences. Yellow flags, each representing a life lost to suicide will be unfurled as part of procession to Salford Museum & Art Gallery. Once at the Museum & Art Gallery a vigil of speakers and performances will honour the lives of those lost to suicide within this community display of unity and support.
The Vigil & Procession of Remembrance will also feature Nav Kapur, Head of Research at the Centre for Suicide Prevention at the University of Manchester, Jon Rouse, Chief Executive of Greater Manchester Health & Social Care along with Paul Dennett, Mayor of Salford.
There will also be a remembrance roll that will be read out at the Vigil and if you would like the name of a loved one to be included email firstname.lastname@example.org
World Suicide Prevention Day Vigil of Remembrance, Tuesday 10th September 6.00pm Gather START Wellbeing Centre M6 5BZ, 6.30pm Procession of Remembrance , 7.00pm Vigil of Remembrance, Salford Museum & Art Gallery M5 4WU
To keep up to date and join ‘Reach Out; Start to End Suicide’ visit: www.startinspiringminds.org.uk/reachout and follow us on social media @reachoustes
For support for yourself or someone you know please visit ‘Shining A Light On Suicide’ http://www.shiningalightonsuicide.org.uk/