By Diane Marsh, Registered Mental Health Nurse, KCC Gravesend East County Councillor, Deputy Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care and Public Health.
I am delighted that people in Gravesham and Kent can now benefit from a suicide prevention app called Stay Alive. Through my personal experience of losing my father to suicide I understand the effects on family and friends. It will always be a priority for me to help others who are suffering, to get the access to support at the time they need it. That's why I am so thankful to KCC for augmenting this fantastic app with information about local support on the go!
Please spread the word on this app.
This is the kent County Council press release on the subject and how to download the app ...
Stay Alive app helping people in Kent and Medway
Residents in Kent and Medway can now benefit from the suicide prevention app called Stay Alive which is packed full of useful information and tools to help individuals stay safe in crisis. It is aimed at both people that may be having thoughts of suicide and at people who are concerned about someone else.
The new partnership between the Kent and Medway Sustainability and Transformation Partnership (STP) and the charity behind the app Grassroots, also means that people can find information about local Kent and Medway support services like Release the Pressure*.
The app contains useful advice on how to help a person who may be thinking about suicide, but crucially it also contains features which people can customise themselves such as;
- a mini-safety plan that can be filled out by a person considering suicide
- a LifeBox to which the user can upload photos from their phone reminding them of their reasons to stay alive
- safety contacts who can help if the user is having thoughts of suicide, direct from their device.
- a wellness plan to support recovery, a place for positive thoughts, inspirations and ideas.
The Kent and Medway Sustainability and Transformation Partnership is a collaboration between Kent County Council, Medway Council, Kent and Medway NHS and Social Care Partnership Trust and all the NHS organisations across Kent and Medway.
Lauretta Kavanagh, STP Mental Health Programme Director said: “We all know how important phones have become in modern life, this app will allow people who are having suicidal thoughts to have instant access to their personalised safety plan and reasons to stay alive at any time day or night, wherever they are in the world. This will help them stay safe at moments of crisis.”
Dr David Chesover, Clinical Lead for Mental Health for NHS West Kent Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “Statistics show how suicide rates across the UK are a leading cause of death among young people aged 20-34 years and the highest suicide rate for the UK is for men aged 45-49 years. This app is very helpful for people contemplating taking their own life, and is also an invaluable tool for anyone who is worried about a family member or a friend.”
The app is available from the Apple App Store
and the Android Google Play https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=uk.org.suicideprevention.stayalive
*The Kent County Council Release the Pressure campaign urges people to seek help by calling Freephone 0800 107 0160 where support is available from trained and experienced staff 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. The campaign website www.releasethepressure.uk also includes case studies from men in Kent who have turned their lives around after attempting suicide.