R U OK?: The Role of Community in Suicide Prevention
Suicide is a social and economic burden that impacts many people around the world. It is a significant public health issue, with over 800,000 suicide deaths taking place every year, and these numbers are increasing each year. Suicide is mostly preventable with the right resources and help. However, people with suicidal tendencies are less likely to seek help due to a variety of reasons, including pessimism, stigma surrounding mental health issues, fear of being hospitalized, or believing that treatment will not help. In Australia, the program R U OK? was developed to promote openness and communication. Initially started as a grassroots campaign, the program aims to reduce suicide by providing support to those facing challenges and educating the community around them. By focusing on the help-giver and not the person who is struggling, R U OK? promotes community-based intervention, acknowledging that friends, family, and the community can have a larger impact on mental health than specialized care.
KeywordsSuicide Suicide prevention Social connectedness Community support Meaningful conversation
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