How record funding aims to stop suicide in Wide Bay
TIM Byrne knows half a million dollars can go a long way to helping save lives in the Heritage City.
The area manager for the Maryborough Suicide Prevention Network says ongoing funding and support is needed to allow community initiatives to tackle the mental health stigma.
About $500,000 has been secured by the Central Queensland, Wide Bay, Sunshine Coast Public Health Network to implement suicide-prevention training programs across the Gympie, Maryborough and North Burnett regions.
Wide Bay's trial will have a specific focus on men and indigenous Australians.
Mr Byrne said it was a great allocation for the Maryborough branch because the funding would help kickstart programs that were proven to reduce suicides in communities by up to 20 per cent.
He said the funds would help empower people in the community to play a role in suicide prevention. The network's LifeSpan model combines health, education and frontline services to support at-risk individuals and allow people to get the right intervention training.
"It's been running for 12 months in Maryborough and it's consisted of a lot of local agencies that come together, looking at different strategies,” Mr Byrne said.
"To provide that model, people need to engage and access training about supporting someone that might be feeling suicidal and how they can direct them to support services.
"That funding will pay for training and support for the local community.”
Similar suicide prevention programs are being rolled out in Gympie, Eidsvold, Mount Perry, Biggenden, Gayndah, Monto and Munduberra.
If you need help there are plenty of services you can call: Lifeline, 131 114; Beyondblue, 1300 224 636; Kids Helpline, 1800 551 800; Suicide Call Back Service: 1300 659 467