Real Talk ChangeMakers are people who help spread the word that it’s ok to talk about suicide. The ChangeMaker movement is an opportunity to connect with like-minded people in your community and support each other to challenge the stigma of suicide. To help get people talking.
A ChangeMaker is a person who cares about suicide in their community and wants to make a difference. That’s people like you and I. You don’t need to be an expert or a health professional to be a Real Talk ChangeMaker. Our ChangeMakers come from all backgrounds and walks of life.
ChangeMakers use Real Talk in their everyday lives. They talk about suicide in an open, honest and reassuring way. In doing this they influence the way people think and give others the confidence to talk about suicide in their everyday lives too.
Some people believe that using the word suicide is dangerous and it might put the idea in a person’s head: This is not true. Using the word suicide gives people the chance to be honest about their feelings.
Talking about suicide openly and without fear sends a powerful message into our community: ‘We care about suicide and we are prepared to have open and courageous talk because we know that talking about suicide helps save lives’ ChangeMakers unite communities and each other by Tackling the Stigma Together.
The more people we talk to the more we realise how our lives and our communities are affected by suicide. Having the opportunity to talk really makes a difference to people. It’s down to us to start that conversation.
Real Talk and the ChangeMakers programme gives everyone a chance to contribute and make a difference.
As a ChangeMaker you can take part in this life-saving movement. You will be helping us raise awareness, tackle stigma and reduce preventable deaths by suicide. You will have the opportunity to build skills and experience in areas like public speaking, planning events and using social media to make change. You will also get the opportunity to connect with like- minded people in your community.
Being a ChangeMaker is a flexible, voluntary commitment. It’s all about you, what you have time for and what you feel comfortable doing.
There are lots of ways to be a ChangeMaker including:
1. Have Real Talk about suicide with the people around you. To get you started we have examples here.
2. Share resources about suicide prevention with others. You don’t need to wait until someone is in a suicidal crisis to do this. Everyone needs to know how and where to get help.
3. Put on a Real Talk event in your local community. For awareness raising and fundraising ideas click here.
4. Upload pictures and share your story. Click here to download social media templates.
5. Learn skills and build confidence to have everyday Real Talk conversations. Sign up for Real Talk here
“I’m a Brighton based Roller Derby Skater. Having suffered with depression myself and been affected by suicide, I know it is vital to connect with people before they get so desperate they see suicide as the only option. Roller derby is a sport that attracts all kinds of people with differing backgrounds, situations and mental states. We all support each other and our teammates are like family.”
“When another person’s pain is hard to bear, imagine how unbearable it is for that person. Please don’t walk away, as no one is immune to misfortune and tragedy. One day it could be you who helps someone person in need or needs support yourself.”
“For prostate Cancer awareness people grow moustaches in November. To show support for Cancer research people wear yellow daffodils. For endangered rhinos people run marathons dressed in elaborate costumes. But for suicide, the biggest killer for men under 50 males, we seem to talk in hushes and skirt awkwardly around the subject, which for many is sadly seen as a shameful taboo. We need to talk about suicide to remove the taboo.”
“I was shocked when I found out that 1 in 15 people have attempted suicide. That figure reflects how many people feel isolated and unable to open up about their feelings. As a community, we can break the stigma associated with these thoughts and start having supportive conversations without judgement or prejudice.”
“I have worked with mental health service users for many years and know too well the cost of suicidal behaviours and suicide to others. Anyone can have suicidal thoughts which are often accompanied with psychological pain. Reaching out to a person with suicidal thoughts can enable them to share their pain and inspire hope in them.”
“I am doing a 40-race challenge over 20 months to raise money for local suicide prevention work. Suicide is everyone’s business because it can affect anyone at any time with devastating consequences. It can be preventable if a person in need gets help at the crucial time. Many people perceive this to be a sensitive topic but try not to let that be a barrier. Mental health is just as important as physical health and we all need to talk about it.”