Derby & District Samaritans raise awareness of campaign to encourage men to seek help
This World Mental Health Day (10 October 2019), Derby Samaritans will be raising awareness of its Real People, Real Stories campaign, which aims to encourage men to seek help by sharing the stories of those who have successfully done so.
A survey by Samaritans found that two in five (41%) men in England, Scotland and Wales aged 20-59 do not seek support when they need to, because they prefer to solve their problems themselves. This group includes men who are most at risk of suicide.
The campaign, supported by National Rail, includes stories of several men who have overcome tough times, who encourage others to seek help by calling Samaritans 24/7 free on 116 123 or visiting Samaritans.org.
Volunteers from Derby Samaritans will be at Derby Train Station talking to commuters and raise awareness of this year’s theme of suicide prevention. Volunteers will be talking to locals about their services, the Samaritans Real People, Real Stories campaign, and providing emotional support to anyone who may need it.
Derby Samaritans Deputy Branch Director Sarah Buck said: “This year’s theme for World Mental Health Day is suicide prevention but preventing suicide and the support available, should be talked about every day. Suicide is preventable and is everyone’s business, so raising awareness of this important issue, will hopefully encourage people to help others in distress.”
“We know men can sometimes find it really hard to admit they are having trouble coping and reluctant to seek help, and we want to say that at the Derby branch we do our best to make it easy to get in touch with Samaritans and talk to a volunteer. We are here to take calls 24/7 free on 116 123.”
The survey found that some of the main reasons why men find life tough and struggle include debt or financial worries (36%), relationship breakdown or family problems (30%), loneliness or isolation (29%) and job loss or job-related problems (25%).
Ex-Premier League footballer and professional boxer, Leon McKenzie, who is supporting the campaign, said: “I know how tough it gets when you’re in that dark place. I’ve been there, not wanting to exist anymore. By sharing my story and supporting the campaign, I hope other men understand that you can climb back up with some help. It’s so important to seek help early on and Samaritans are here to listen.”
Paul Plummer, chief executive of the Rail Delivery Group, said: “Suicide prevention is really important to us which is why we’re proud to welcome volunteers into stations and support the Samaritans’ campaign. Rail companies are working together to make the railway a safe and supportive place for people who are finding life tough and we encourage our passengers and staff to speak out and seek help when they need it.”
The Real People, Real Stories survey results found that although 78% of men say it’s okay to admit you’re not feeling okay, many still avoid speaking out when they’re finding life tough. A quarter of men (25%) felt their problems weren’t important enough to warrant calling a helpline.
Almost 3 in 10 men (29%) said loneliness and isolation had made them feel low in the past.
There are expected to be around 100 local events in England, Wales and Scotland to help promote the campaign.
Find out more about Real People, Real Stories at: http://www.samaritans.org/realpeoplerealstories, You can also support by following the campaign @samaritanscharity on Instagram or sharing the video on Twitter @samaritans or Facebook at www.facebook.com/samaritanscharity, using the hashtag #RealPeopleRealStories.