Men in rural Ireland are being urged to seek help if feeling suicidal

The themes for this year’s World Prevention Suicide Day are connect, communicate, care

farming

File photo: Creative Commons

Men in farming communities have been encouraged to reach out for help dealing with suicidal thoughts. 

With today marking World Prevention Suicide Day, Pieta House and the Irish Farmers’ Association (IFA) are highlighting the range of support services available for people with mental heath difficulties. 

The three themes for this year's event are connect, communicate, care.

The two organisations together provide the 'Mind Our Farm Families' phone line, 1890 130 022, which puts farmers in direct contact with a Pieta House therapist.

IFA President Joe Healy said: "Suicide is preventable and it is so important that if you are feeling suicidal or you are concerned about a family member or friend that you talk to someone.

"The 'Mind Our Farm Families' service is a solution-focused, one-to-one counselling service that is completely free of charge."

The World Health Organisation estimates that more than 800,000 people die by suicide each year, with up to 25 times as many making a suicide attempt.

According to the latest CSO figures, 451 people died by suicide in Ireland in 2015. 

"Our vision is of a world where suicide, self-harm and stigma have been replaced by hope, self-care and acceptance,” said Pieta House CEO Brian Higgins.

"In the last 10 years we have been brilliant at replacing suicide with hope and bringing people to self-care, but the biggest struggle for us is to replace stigma with acceptance.

"Individually, we all need to tackle the stigma that leads people to the doors of Pieta House."

The charity will be at the IFA stand (block number 2, row 12, stand 289) at the National Ploughing Championships in Tullamore from September 20th to 22nd.

You can contact Samaritans free any time from any phone on 116 123 or visit www.samaritans.ie to find details of your nearest branch. Online information can also be found at www.yourmentalhealth.ie