With the Central Statistics Office (CSO) recently publishing a 7% increase in suicides in Ireland, 525 suicides recorded in 2011 and 84% being males it is so fitting that Soroptimists all over the country have adopted positive mental health and the prevention of suicide as their 2 year national project.
Soroptimists Inter-national (SI) are a world wide organisation of over 90,000 like minded women who give of their time voluntarily to work together on community-based and international projects to improve the lives and status of women and girls through education, empowerment and enabling opportunities. The Soroptimists approached the HSE and Mental Health Ireland (MHI) with their proposal and a partnership project was launched. All three parties will work together on this community project to create better awareness and understanding of our mental health. Our mental health is very important – “without mental health we have no health at all”,
However many of us struggle when we are asked what are we doing to protect our Mental Health. Building Resilience is developing individual strengths and abilities to “bounce back” from challenges and setbacks that life presents us with. It involves being able to adapt to challenges, drawing on both our own strengths and the available resources to assist us during times of stress.
We all need to know what support is available to us when we sometimes feel low or under too much pressure. This project with see our local Soroptimist club working jointly with HSE and Mental Health Ireland personnel to get us all in the community thinking more about our Mental Health and to take the time to inform ourselves of the many different services and supports that are available in our community.
We need to build a strong community, one that is united to support one another so that we can pick up signs when someone might be thinking of ending their life. There are recommended courses all free of charge provided by the HSE and Mental Health Ireland that everyone can attend –SafeT.A.L.K. which is a 2.5 hour introduction first aid course and the ASIST course is a more comprehensive two day skills-building workshop in suicide first aid. All of us could benefit by doing these courses – all it takes is for us to give of our time.
Our local Clonmel Soroptimist Club which has done great work for our community in the past is energetic and eager to make a difference in our community to promote positive mental health.
Monday October 10 was World Mental Health day and all during the week we should take a minute to think about our mental health:
Soroptimists are asking: Do you know that there are ten tips to build your resilience for good mental health – to start you off here are three:
Have the courage to be imperfect
Sign up for that course, join that club,
Spend time with people who make you feel good.
More tips to come from Soroptimists Clonmel & District, Mental Health Ireland and the HSE.