When we talk about suicide, it’s important to begin from a place of understanding that suicide is a complex issue. When someone attempts to end their life, there is no tracing the experience back to any one cause. Suicide occurs across all age, economic, social, and ethnic boundaries. Not all those who attempt suicide are struggling with mental health.
The Without a Home Report indicates that 42% of youth experiencing homelessness reported at least one suicide attempt. Female and LGBTQ identified youth were at even higher risk.
Experiencing homelessness can dramatically affect someone’s quality of life and mental health, it’s painful and traumatic. That’s why it’s so important for youth to have access to services like those at Eva’s, including people who care about them. Through supporting youth to find stability, resources, and a greater sense of worth, we can help them to heal and start fresh.
“I am worth being helped. I deserve to be helped.” – Akia, resident at Eva’s.
TAKE A MINUTE
Today on World Suicide Prevention Day, the Canadian Association for Suicide Prevention (CASP) encourages you to take a minute.
Take a minute to:
- Speak up. Visit the CASP Facebook page and join them on Twitter @CASP_CA and Instagram to spread the message of WSPD through social media. *
- Talk to someone who may be struggling. If you are concerned about someone, reach out and ask them if they want to talk. A caring, compassionate person at a difficult time can help turn things around. *
- Learn the language. This is important as we contribute to reducing the stigma and support people who may be dealing with suicide. Check out the CASP suggested language.
BE AWARE. SUICIDE IN THE MEDIA.
Netflix recently released a series called 13 Reasons Why which follows the aftermath of a young girl who dies by suicide. Though there are many TV shows and movies that have attempted to tackle the topic of suicide, 13 Reasons Why is specifically targeted to young people and suicide prevention experts are concerned about the affect it might have on youth watching the program. It’s important to consider how we can support the young people in our lives who are consuming content that deals with suicide.
If you need help because you are thinking about suicide, know someone who is, or are grieving someone who has died by suicide, you can access resources on suicideprevention.ca.
If you are or know a youth at risk of or currently experiencing homelessness, you can find a list of resources at evas.ca or reach out to us directly.
* Source: suicideprevention.ca