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World Suicide Prevention Day – September 10

 At Youth Focus, we have a vision of a world where a young person’s mental health does not get in the way of them being who they want to be. While this is what we strive for every day of the year, it’s particularly pertinent on World Suicide Prevention Day.  

It is estimated that there are currently more than 700,000 suicides per year worldwide, and we know that each suicide profoundly affects many more people. In Australia alone, nearly 10 million people have been affected by suicide, which equates to almost half of our nation. Tragically, suicide remains the leading cause of death amongst young people aged between 15 and 24.  

What’s more, recent research from Telethon Kids Institute has shown that communities with poor access to mental health services are eight times more likely to be youth suicide hotspots.

On World Suicide Prevention Day, we embrace 2023’s theme of “Creating Hope Through Action”, standing united with the International Association of Suicide Prevention and the World Health Organization in our commitment to reducing suicide, by empowering individuals with the confidence to take action.  

Youth Focus exists to prevent youth suicide and to champion the mental health and wellbeing of young West Australians aged between 12 and 25.   

At Youth Focus, we believe that the earlier mental health challenges are identified, the more chance we have of reducing the risk of suicide.   

Around three quarters of mental illness occurs in people before they’re 25. Getting the right support can have lifelong benefits for a young person’s health, social connections, education and future career.  

At Youth Focus, we provide a ranges of mental health services across Western Australia, all tailored to the needs of young people, as we believe that early intervention is key to preventing death by suicide.   

We urge anyone who notices changes in their mental health, or in the mental health of a friend or family member, to reach out to Youth Focus for support.  

Signs that it’s time to reach out: 

  • Feeling unhappy, down or stressed a lot of the time   
  • Can’t deal with school or are finding it difficult to concentrate   
  • Losing interest and fun in activities that you once enjoyed   
  • Change in appetite, eating or weight  
  • Tiredness, lack of energy and motivation   
  • Are having difficulties with your family or friends   
  • Change in sleeping   
  • Thoughts of death or suicide   
  • Are being bullied, hurt or harassed   
  • Unwanted thoughts and fears   
  • Hurting yourself as a way of coping with difficult feelings   

If you’re feeling this way and need someone to talk to urgently, please reach out to:  

  • For people over 18, contact Mental Health Emergency Response Line: 1300 555 788  
  • For people under 18, contact CAMHS Crisis Connect: 1800 048 636    
  • For people who identify as Aboriginal or Torres Straight Islander, contact 13YARN: 13 92 76    
  • For people who live in regional areas, contact Rurallink: 1800 552 002   
  • Lifeline: 13 11 14   

Together, let’s embrace our role as champions of youth mental health, and the way in which we partner with young people to create hope by taking action.