Wellness Workshops now online

Image courtesy of Suicide or Survive.

Eoin Meegan

With Covid-19 dominating all the headlines at the moment, we may be in danger of overlooking other critical problems in society: mental health, domestic abuse, child vulnerability, and the topic under scrutiny here, suicide and self-harm.
Suicide or Survive (SOS) are a nationwide Irish charity focused on breaking down the stigma attached to mental illness, while ensuring those affected have appropriate quality recovery services.
To this end, they run Wellness Workshops, along with a variety of other programmes, most notably the Wellness Recovery Action Plan (WRAP), a two-day empowerment programme that aims to facilitate individuals to make better choices by developing their own personally-tailored Wellness Action Plan.
Starting from humble beginnings in Shankill some twenty years ago, the charity now has a global reach.
While not a response to Covid-19 – mental health issues have been with us for a long time now – the Coronavirus crisis has forced the organisation to re-imagine their delivery channels, and think of how they could get their impactful material and very positive message out to those who need it most. And so the SOS Wellness Webinars were born.
Given that mental health is a very personal and often a messy subject, the team at SOS approach this issue with their long-standing commitment to genuineness, understanding, respect and acceptance. Ireland has the 17th highest rate of suicides in Europe, and the fourth highest for males between 15 and 24.
There is an inordinately high male to female ratio of suicide here. And when it comes to self-harm, which notably, is more pronounced in females, this too has increased, by 20% according to latest statistics. Addressing this problem is something society as a whole needs to tackle with the utmost urgency.
The operating principle that underpins the work of SOS is that behind every statistic on suicide and self-harm there is a real human being: a brother, father, sister, wife; a loved one. Their ethos is: “A world where everyone is empowered to look after their mental health and less people die by suicide.”
They have noticed that since the Covid-19 pandemic an extra layer of fear and panic has found its way into our daily challenges. This has given them the added impetus to reach out to a vulnerable and often confused community with an array of tips, tools and techniques during this time of crisis when most of us are still staying at home.
The Wellness Webinars deal with pertinent topics for the times we now find ourselves living in, addressing issues such as managing our thoughts, finding out which part of life is bothering us the most, and just learning how to rediscover hope again in our lives.
People can now register to attend the webinars at www.suicideorsurvive.ie and then follow the links to the webinars on the events calendar.
The SOS Wellness Workshops have migrated with ease to their new home online. As the webinar series is sponsored by the HSE through the office of the National Office for Suicide Prevention, it comes funded and at no cost to the end user. We support the message from the SOS team at this time: Stay at Home. Stay Safe. And Stay Well.