13 Aug 2020

Candlelit Vigial for World Suicide Prevention Day 2020

ABC for Mental Health is hosting a candlelit vigil on Thursday, September 10th from 7.30 pm in Authurs Quay Park as part of World Suicide Prevention Day 2020.  This is the third year that Amanda is organising this event in Limerick. Last year saw a big turnout as people from throughout the region attended to raise awareness for and also to remember those who have died of suicide.

Suicide in Ireland

The most recent statistics for suicide and self-harm in Ireland from 2019 highlights that:

  • There was 421 deaths by suicide and intentional self-harm in 2020
  • Worryingly the highest overall suicide rate was registered in Limerick city at 22 deaths per 100,000 of population. 
  • This is more than seven times higher than the suicide rate listed for Dublin

Over the last few years as well Limerick has been amongst the hardest hit by suicide with the suicide rate being more than twice the national average from 2014 to 2016.

Every life lost to suicide represents someone’s partner, child, parent, friend, or colleague. For each suicide, approximately 135 people suffer intense grief or are otherwise affected.

In Limerick, there are many organisations whose goal is to help people who are contemplating suicide such as:

  • Jigsaw
  • CCRT Ireland
  • Limerick Mental Health Association

One of the most visible is Limerick Suicide Watch who patrols the bridges and rivers of Limerick City and has continued to do so even during the lockdown

Impact of the Lockdown on Mental Health

This period in particular had a big impact on the mental health of many with a recent survey by Samaritans highlighting that two in five men believe their mental health has been negatively affected by lockdown measures. This is also backed up with an expected surge in demand’ for mental health services due to pandemic which was highlighted at a recent Oireachtas hearing. 

The Theme for World Suicide Prevention Day 2020

This year the theme is “Working Together to Prevent Suicide” because we can all play a part to help those who have suicidal tendencies. The image below shows how individuals and organisations throughout society can all play a part and work together.

world suicide prevention day 2020

If you’re interested in attending the vigil it will be taking place in Arthurs Quay Park at 7.30 on September 10th. We also want to say well done to Amanda Clifford who is the key driver behind ABC for Mental Health and who has done sterling work in the last few years to help end the stigma around mental health as well.