Funding is being announced today for innovative community-based Lancashire and South Cumbria projects to help reduce the numbers of people taking their own lives.
Led by Healthier Lancashire and South Cumbria, a partnership of local authority, public sector, NHS and health and care organisations, groups are being offered between £500 and £5000 to support projects designed to prevent suicide and reduce self-harm.
Paul Hopley, Mental Health Programme Deputy Director for Healthier Lancashire and South Cumbria, said: “We will keep working tirelessly to reduce deaths by suicide. Most local people who take their own lives are not known to our specialist mental health services, so we’re reaching out to our communities to innovate – test a new idea, device or method – so that all of us may learn more about how to prevent suicide. We want to understand what makes a difference to people who are feeling suicidal or are self-harming and what works to keep them safe during those periods of their life.”
The fund is being overseen by a collaboration of organisations which have produced an action plan, to reduce the risk of suicide in key high-risk groups up to 2020. The plan also includes tailored approaches to improve mental health and wellbeing in the county.
Dr Sakthi Karunanithi, lead for Population Health and Prevention for Healthier Lancashire and South Cumbria and Director of Public Health for Lancashire County Council said: “This is funding for people to develop little or big ideas, with the ultimate goal of helping to prevent people taking their own life. By working together as a region, we can make a difference and help to prevent harm and save lives.”
“This innovation grant is designed to fund grassroots programmes to prevent suicides, save lives and reduce self-harm. We know that in the right hands, a little can go a long way, so we want to support local groups who are doing so much to keep people safe.”
A total of £80,000 funding is available to primarily help reduce suicide by middle aged men and self-harm within local communities.
Any community group, charity or organisation can apply. The majority of the funding is likely to be awarded to local groups from the voluntary or charity sectors.
Bids will be considered by a small panel from the multi-agency Suicide Prevention Oversight Board. The panel will include representation from Public Health, Clinical Commissioning Groups and people impacted by suicide.
Applications need to be submitted via the Healthier Lancashire and South Cumbria website and must be received by 27th May 2019.
Visit www.healthierlsc.co.uk/suicidepreventionfund to apply.