Resources and Information

There is a range of suicide prevention resources available as part of the STOP Suicide Campaign. These include self-help leaflets for those who are experiencing suicidal thoughts as well as those who are concerned that someone they know might be at risk. There are also posters giving the key campaign messages, STOP Suicide pledge cards for you to carry in your wallet and ‘I’d Ask’ badges to help you spread the word.

Most of these resources are downloadable (please see Quick Link, right). You can also download the various illustrations that feature on this site, which were purpose designed for this campaign by local illustrator Luke Aldington. If you would like hard copies of our resource, please call or email one of our campaign team.

On this page there is also information on the signs and symptoms of depression, the Five Ways to Wellbeing, links to help for those who have been bereaved by suicide and lots of other useful resources.

Signs and symptoms of depression

Depression is a diagnosable condition that can happen to anyone. It is not something you can just ‘snap out of’ but it is treatable. For more information about the signs, symptoms and treatments available for depression and other mental health issues, please visit the MIND A-Z of Mental Health.

It is completely natural for us to feel temporarily ‘sad’ or ‘blue’ when things go wrong in our lives – but that is not the same as the diagnosable condition ‘clinical depression’.

Clinical depression lasts for at least two week and affects how a person thinks, feels and behaves. It will also interfere with the individual’s functioning – i.e. their ability to work, study and/or have satisfying relationships. Depression is not something that you can just ‘snap out of’ but it is treatable.

Everyone is different and symptoms can vary widely from one person to another, but are likely to include at least two of the following:

  • An unusually sad mood that does not go away.
  • A loss of enjoyment and interest in activities that were previously enjoyable
  • Persistent tiredness and lack of energy.

Other possible symptoms include:

  • Sleeping too much or too little
  • Overeating or loss of appetite
  • Loss of libido
  • Unexplained aches and pains
  • Constipation

Thoughts and feelings

  • Sadness
  • Anxiety/agitation
  • Guilt
  • Anger/irritation
  • Mood swings
  • Emotional ‘numbing’
  • Helplessness and hopelessness
  • Self criticism/ self-loathing
  • Negativity
  • Thoughts of death and suicide

Behaviour

  • Crying spells
  • Withdrawal from others
  • Loss of interest in personal appearance
  • Neglecting responsibilities

If you think you might be depressed, the best place to start is by seeking help from your GP.

Support for those bereaved by suicide

Grieving and dealing with the changes that follow any death is never easy. However, those who are bereaved by suicide often feel particularly isolated at a time when they are in severe emotional pain. Indeed, when someone you know takes their own life it can leave you feeling so low that you may be vulnerable to thoughts of suicide yourself.

If that is your experience, it is nothing to be ashamed of and you are not alone. You may want to talk through these thoughts and feelings with someone you trust – a friend, someone in your family, perhaps with your GP or a trained volunteer from organisations specialising in bereavement support, such as the Survivors of Bereavement by Suicide (SOBS) or Cruse. Please click here to download the Cruse Bereavement Care fact sheet Support for people bereaved by suicide.

Cruse has also launched Hope Again – a youth website where young people who are facing grief can share their stories with others and find information about available services.

Help is at Hand is a guide offering practical and emotional support for people bereaved by suicide. More info: www.supportaftersuicide.org.uk

Cambridge Cruse also offers a group for those bereaved by suicide which meets the first Wednesday of every month at the Friends’ Meeting House on Jesus Lane at 7.30pm (no meeting in August).

Finally, Public Health England (PHE) has recently published Support after a suicide: A guide to providing local services, which offers practical advice for commissioners to understand why and how they can deliver support after suicide in their local areas.

PHE has also supported further guidance by NSPA and Support after Suicide to develop and deliver local bereavement support services and to evaluate local bereavement support services.

Crisis Card – the SUN Network

Designed by The SUN Network and people who access Mental Health services, the Crisis Card aims to support and enable you in a health crisis to better manage your mental health and wellbeing.

The Crisis Card is available for people who have mental health challenges who reside in Cambridgeshire.

Download your paper copy now or from the SUN Network website. Also available from local Mental Health Services.

Useful Apps

 The Crisis Card Smartphone App

* Crisis Card App: Important Update *

In the event of a health crisis, with its traffic light feature, this user-friendly app provides a one-button-press ‘call for help’, so you can reach out to your support network without having to face a phone call, you can communicate your needs without having to talk, and share your location, without having to know it yourself. Available FREE from The App store or Google Play.

Read more about the app.

Stay Alive – Grassroots Suicide Prevention

A suicide prevention pocket resource for the UK, Stay Alive offers help and support both to people with thoughts of suicide and to people concerned about someone else. The app can be personalised to tailor it to the user. Available FREE from The App store or Google Play.

More information about the app.

Counselling (UK)

Counselling Directory (UK)
Find a counsellor or psychotherapist dealing with Suicidal Thoughts.


LGBT Mental Health

With over 30 years experience of working with Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people and a background in youth and community work, Jan Bridget discusses how LGBT people are more likely to experience mental health problems than heterosexuals and what they can do to get help. Read the full document here.

The Royal College of Nursing and Public Health England have also developed a toolkit for nurses in preventing suicide among lesbian, gay and bisexual young people and preventing suicide among trans young people.

Stop LGB&T Hate Crime helpline – call 0808 801 0661. Open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year; calls are free from landlines and most mobiles but they can always call you back if you want.

Or visit the Stop Hate UK website.

Five ways to wellbeing

The Five Ways to Well-being are a set of evidence-based actions, researched  and developed by the New Economics Foundation which promote people’s wellbeing. They are: Connect, Be Active, Take Notice, Keep Learning and Give. These activities are simple things individuals can do in their everyday lives:

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Connect

Feeling close to, and valued by, other people is a fundamental human need. Social relationships are critical for promoting wellbeing and can help reduce the risk of  mental ill health for people of all ages. With this in mind, try to do something different today – and make a connection.

  • Talk to someone instead of sending an email
  • Speak to someone new
  • Ask how someone’s weekend was and really listen when they tell you
  • Phone or meet someone you care about for a proper catch up
  • Give a colleague a lift to work or share the journey home with them
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Be active

Regular physical activity is associated with lower rates of depression and anxiety across all age groups. Exercise is also essential for slowing age-related cognitive decline and for promoting well-being. It doesn’t need to be particularly intense for you to feel good – slower-paced activities, such as walking, can have the added benefit of encouraging social interactions as well as providing some level of exercise.

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Take notice

‘Taking notice’ of the world around you, in the here and now, can directly enhance your wellbeing. Many of us spend so much time thinking about things in the past or worries about the future that we don’t enjoy the moment and the environment around us. Try taking some time every day to savour the moment and the environment around you.

A few ideas:

  • Go for a walk and make a conscious effort to notice the landmarks and landscape on your route
  • Have a ‘clear the clutter’ day
  • Go somewhere pleasant for lunch, away from your normal setting, and really savour the environment and the tastes and textures of your food
  • Take notice of how people around you are feeling or acting
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Learn

Continued learning through life enhances self-esteem and encourages social interaction and a more active life. Signing up for a night class or pursuing a new interest or hobby is a great way to boost your wellbeing. However, you don’t have to sign up to a formal activity to learn new things. Here are a few more ideas which you could try building in to your regular activities:

  • Find out something about your colleagues
  • Read the news or a book
  • Set up a book club
  • Do a crossword or Sudoku
  • Research something you’ve always wondered about
  • Learn a new word every day
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Give

Participation in social and community life – by volunteering for example – is strongly linked with improved wellbeing. Research has shown that carrying out an act of kindness once a week over a six-week period is associated with an increase in wellbeing.

For further information about the evidence behind the five ways to wellbeing, please click here.

Other suicide prevention resources

Preventing suicide: a resource series
A series of resources about suicide prevention for use by specific groups (eg GPs, teachers, primary health care workers, prison staff, employees, emergency services, media professionals). These documents were produced as part of SUPRE, the WHO worldwide initiative for the prevention of suicide.

Preventing suicide: a global imperative
This report from the World Health Organization (WHO) provides a global knowledge base on suicide and suicide attempts as well as actionable steps for countries based on their current resources and context to move forward in suicide prevention.

Mind in Cambridgeshire resources
Including Five Ways to Wellbeing, Top Tips and Helplines and information links.

Atlas of Variation
Public Health England’s tool shows suicide rates and associated risk factors for each local authority area.

‘Staying safe if you’re not sure life’s worth living’
The new Connecting with People online resource for people who are distressed or potentially suicidal.

WHO Fact sheet N°398: suicide
Information about suicide and WHO’s response around suicide prevention globally.

Samaritans’ Media Guidelines for Reporting Suicide and other factsheets
Produced following extensive consultation with journalists and editors throughout the industry.