A non-profit suicide prevention centre shared some worrying statistics recently that highlighted the need for more care and concern, especially towards Singapore’s youths.
Samaritans of Singapore, or SOS, told reporters in a media conference yesterday that they saved a total of 114 people between April last year to last month from suicide – that’s one person every three days.
They added that 69% were female and, as a whole, 44% were 20 to 29 years old and 38% were 10 to 19 years old.
They also dealt with the 42% of callers who attempted suicide by jumping.
SOS’s heroes consist of volunteers who man its 24-hour hotline and CareText WhatsApp service, and 20 crisis support staff who deals with the higher-risk cases that mostly happen at night after-hours.
The text service was introduced in 2020 to cater to the rise in distress calls during the midst of the pandemic. In 2022, 11,107 people used the service, the same year that SOS received more than double the number of calls for help (27,341) from 2020 (11,591).
SOS expressed concern about the increasing number of youths at-risk since 82% of callers were aged 29 and below in September last year.
They added that they have started a support group, which is run by close to 400 volunteers, for those who have attempted suicide before.
SOS hopes to recruit more volunteers and work with corporate partners.
If you or someone you know needs help with mental health-related issues, there are several hotline services available:
Samaritans of Singapore (24 hours): 1-767 / 9151-1767 (CareText via WhatsApp)
Institute of Mental Health’s Mental Health Helpline (24 hours): 6389-2222
Singapore Association for Mental Health: 1800-283-7019
Fei Yue’s Online Counselling Service: eC2.sg
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