World Suicide Prevention Day

Since 2011, Grassroots Suicide Prevention has held an event in Brighton & Hove each year to mark World Suicide Prevention Day. WSPD is a world-wide event designated by the International Association of Suicide Prevention where people around the globe join together with the common goal of preventing suicide.

World Suicide Prevention Day 2017

World Suicide Prevention Day is led by the International Association for Suicide Prevention (IASP) and the World Health Organisation. Efforts to prevent suicide have been celebrated on September 10th each year since 2003. This year, the theme is ‘Take a minute, change a life’.

Grassroots Suicide Prevention, a Brighton-based charity, will be marking World Suicide Prevention Day with a range of awareness raising activities. By engaging the public through quick, fun minute challenges such as table tennis and circus skills, Grassroots hopes to get people talking about suicide prevention and help them understand what they can do to help. This will include various calls to action for the public, including:

The Grassroots team will be holding an open event at the Unitarian Church, Brighton, from 2pm on Friday 8 September with support from local partners, including, Mankind, Pavilions, Samaritans, and Cafe Plenty. The afternoon will involve fun one-minute challenges to engage the public hosted by Brighton Table Tennis Club and DreamSpin Hoop Dance, a chance to take a framed selfie photo in support of suicide prevention, and an opportunity to learn how you can help change a life through open talk about suicide.

Grassroots will also have a presence at Brighton Station during the week, working with local street artist Madderdoit? to paint a mural on a prominent electricity box at the rear of the Station promoting the ‘StayAlive’ app, and raising awareness with commuters through an information stall.

Funding for this awareness raising work and training has come through a grant from Brighton & Hove City Council's Public Health team.

Grassroots Chief Executive Stella Comber says:

“Suicide rates in Brighton and Hove are among the highest in the UK and today is an opportunity for us to highlight this urgent issue. Each suicide is an individual tragedy and has a devastating impact on family, colleagues, friends and the wider community. Grassroots believe that many suicides can be prevented. Our aim is to build the confidence of the public to ensure that they are alert to the risk of suicide and have the confidence to ask direct questions and support a person at risk. We want to send this message out into the heart of the community so that people feel empowered to help others and to start conversations that quite literally save lives. You don’t have to be an expert - in the time it takes you to order a coffee it really could be possible to change the course of another person’s life. World Suicide Prevention Day a unique opportunity for members of the public to come down to the Unitarian Church and find out more about how we can work together to make Brighton and Hove a suicide safer community.”

World Suicide Prevention Day 2016

The theme for this year was "Connect, Communicate & Care". Our events included:

  • A stall at Brighton Station.
  • A community safeTALK training 16 participants.
  • A resource marketplace, including representitives from Rethink Survivors of Suicide, MindOut, and Samaritans.
  • A main event including news about our award-winning Stay Alive suicide prevention app. There were also opportunites to hear from other influencial guest speakers and find out what is going on in the city and surrounding areas.
  • A two-minute's silence to remember those we have loved and lost to suicide.
  • Grassroots Suicide Prevention gratefully acknowledge funding from Public Health Brighton & Hove City Council who have enabled us to organise these events.

World Suicide Prevention Day 2015

Events included:

  • A stall at Brighton Station.
  • A community safeTALK training 21 participants.
  • A community event on the theme of Reaching Out and Saving Lives, with speakers from Brighton & Hove Bus Company, the High Sheriff of East Sussex, an author addressing suicide bereavement and a panel discussion addressing suicide prevention and engaging with the audience.
  • A Bike Train in Brighton, where 12 cyclists rode through the centre to raise awareness of suicide prevention. A stall was held before and after the event. Images can be found here.

World Suicide Prevention Day 2014

Events included:

  • Two free safeTALK suicide prevention courses for 62 community members (sponsored by One Cent Call and local fundraisers).
  • The launch of StayAlive, the UK's first suicide prevention mobile phone app, attended by 66 people.
  • The launch of the UK's first suicide prevention tool for people with learning disabilities.
  • Workshops by Grassroots and Samaritans, attended by 43 community members.
  • Talks by Grassroots Directors Chris Brown and Miranda Frost, plus Giles York (Chief Constable Sussex Police and Force lead for Diversity), Rachel Watters (Project Management Assistant, Suicide Prevention, Network Rail) and Lisa Rodrigues (former CEO of Sussex Partnership Foundation Trust and new Grassroots Trustee).
  • A minute's silence to remember those we have loved and lost to suicide

The venue and catering was provided by The Brighthelm Centre. The theme this year was "Suicide Prevention: One World Connected."

World Suicide Prevention Day 2013

This event took place at BHASVIC Sixth Form College, Hove and was attended by 140 people. Highlights included:

  • Skype presentation of an international Award of Excellence to Grassroots made by Kathryn Von Boskirk, Vice President of LivingWorks Education.
  • Right Here
    Right Here project
  • A performance from Right Here, a local project led by young people.
  • A personal story from local artist Yvonne J Foster of how a suicide prevention intervention touched her life.
  • A screening of Grassroots' new film "Something in the Silence".
  • A speech from James Moncrieff, Deputy Principle of BHASVIC Sixth Form College.
  • A speech by Cllr Anne Meadows, Brighton & Hove's Deputy Mayor.
  • A speech from Tom Scanlon, Director of Public Health Brighton & Hove.
  • An update from Grassroots on the first year of our Suicide Safer Brighton & Hove project
  • A spoken word piece from Erica
  • A minute's silence to remember those we have loved and lost to suicide

We also hosted a stall at the Kissing Statue plus a free, outdoor photographic exhibition featuring beautiful portraits with a clear stigma reduction message in Jubilee Square, outside Brighton Library.

World Suicide Prevention Day 2012

Held at The Latest Music Bar in Brighton, 125 people gathered on 10 September 2012 to mark this day. The event included:

  • A live skype interview with activist and performance artist Kate Bornstein about mental health and suicide prevention.
  • Sinead O'Connor
    Sinead O'Connor
  • A live skype interview with singer/songwriter Sinead O'Connor about mental health and suicide prevention.
  • A live skype interview with Roy Henry Vickers, a First Nations artist and spiritual leader.
  • A speech by Kevin Betts about his personal experience of his father's suicide.
  • A message from the President of the International Association of Suicide Prevention (IASP).
  • The launch of our Suicide Safer Brighton & Hove project.
  • A minute's silence to remember those we have loved and lost to suicide.

World Suicide Prevention Day 2011

Our first World Suicide Prevention Day event was held upstairs at The Rock Inn, Brighton and was attended by about 40 people. Events included:

  • A lit candle
  • A video message from Caroline Lucas.
  • A live skype performance by Susan Aglukark, a First Nations artist from Canada, and Friends of Emmett, a rock band supporting suicide prevention.
  • A Skype link-up with Canada's Collateral Damage project, and screening of their photo portraits of suicide survivors.
  • The launch of our first video "I Am Alive".
  • Speeches from Tom Scanlon, Director of Public Health Brighton & Hove, Helen Jones of MindOut, and an ASIST participant.
  • A talk about the so-called 'suicide song', Gloomy Sunday, by Angi Mariani.
  • A minute's silence to remember those we have loved and lost to suicide

Video from this event can be found here:

Latest News!

21 August 2017

Exciting announcement!

On Friday 8 September Grassroots Suicide Prevention will be relaunching their suicide prevention App #StayAlive.

Stay Alive is the ideal tool to help people who are suffering with thoughts of suicide to be reminded of their own reasons for living and access support in times of crisis. It’s also a great resource for carers supporting people with thoughts of suicide.

We currently have 30,000 downloads and are looking to significantly add to this during World Suicide Prevention Day, on 10 September 2017.Your support could help save a life. 

How? By downloading this free, award-winning app you will help highlight the importance of suicide prevention.

Download the Stay Alive app now, available free on the App Store or Google Play.

Take a minute, change a life.


June 2017

Appointment of new Training Manager

We are pleased to announce the appointment of our new Training Manager Greg Burgess. He has extensive knowledge of suicide prevention work and has previously lead on award winning partnerships in Scotland. We are excited to be working with Greg and are looking forward to his contributions to our new men's suicide prevention project in East Sussex.

# Stay Alive

A mobile app for those at risk of suicide and people worried about someone.

Android App on Google play
Available on the App Store
Patient Safety Awards Winner, 2015

Responding to the launch of the Stay Alive app Emma Wadey, Director of Nursing Standards and Safety at Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, said:

"Suicide is everyone's business; it devastates so many lives no matter who you are, where you work or where you live. We want to use every method available to us to make Sussex, and beyond, a place where people thinking about suicide are supported and helped in their workplace and their community."

Thank you to all our clients and funders, including

  • Big Lottery Fund
  • NHS Brighton and Hove
  • Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust
  • Department of Health
  • Sussex Community Foundation
  • Lloyds Bank
  • Brighton & Hove City Council
  • East Sussex County Council
  • West Sussex County Council
  • Ealing
  • Surrey County Council
  • YMCA
  • Royal Navy
  • Crime Reduction Initiatives