Suicide kills six Australian men a day and costs the economy an estimated $13.75B.
We know suicide is preventable; we know that men are three times more likely to take their own lives and we know that most approaches to suicide prevention are more effective at helping women.
With this in mind, we officially launched the Stop Male Suicide project in Sydney on May 31st 2016, with the aim of helping people to take action to prevent male suicide.
Our mission is to develop and champion male-friendly approaches to suicide prevention.
Our vision is a world where gender is no barrier to people living life to the full, and every individual is just one conversation away from whatever support and help they need.
This report provides a short overview of some of the key actions we took to start bringing that vision to life in 2016.
STOP MALE SUICIDE SEMINARS
In 2016 we held four Stop Male Suicide seminars in Sydney, Brisbane, Perth and Melbourne, thanks to the generous help and support of various partners who provided venues, speakers and helped promote the events.
The seminars were a great opportunity to meet hundreds of people around Australia who are committed to taking action to stop male suicide. The seminars provided a platform for dozens of great speakers to share their wisdom and expertise with us.
We will continue to deliver regional seminars in 2017, building on everything we learnt in 2016. This year, to make these events more accessible, we will make entry to the seminars free to everyone working in the male suicide prevention sector.
Find out how you can book your place for one of Stop Male Suicide seminars here today.
OUR STOP MALE SUICIDE BOOK
Probably our proudest achievement in 2016 was publishing the book “How You Can Stop Male Suicide in Seven Simple Steps”. We believe it’s a great resource for anyone who is committed to and passionate about stopping male suicide. The book is based on a broad range of international research and good practice, all presented in a style that is quick to read and easy to understand.
While the book is written for the Australian market, it has attracted readers around the world and our longer-term aim is to produce versions of the book in other countries and keep improving the quality and impact of the content with each new edition.
You can find out more about our book You Can Stop Male Suicide here.
MALE SUICIDE PREVENTION TRAINING
One of the key messages of the book, You Can Stop Male Suicide, is that most approaches to suicide prevention are more effective at helping suicidal women than suicidal men.
The number one tactic we use to prevent suicide in Australia, is to try and spot suicidal people and then take action to stop them from taking their own lives. The major flaw in this approach is that the majority of people who are reported to be suicidal are not men, but women. As such, this traditional approach to suicide prevention can be considered to be more “female-friendly” than “male-friendly”.
Our Male Suicide Prevention training tackles this challenge head on by revealing how we can learn to spot men at risk of suicide, even when men are less likely to tell us that they are feeling suicidal and thinking about taking their own lives.
We show you how you can build on the strengths of traditional “female-friendly” approaches to suicide prevention and introduce you to a new, “male-friendly” model of suicide prevention, that is designed to help you to take action to stop male suicide.
We piloted the training in Sydney in June, with the support of Nepean Blue Mountains Local Health District and delivered an updated version of the training in Newcastle and Sydney in November.
Find out how you can come and join us for a day’s training in 2017 here.
The work and ideas of the Stop Male Suicide project featured in a broad range of media outlets in 2016. You can take a look at some of the media using the links below:
- 10 ways we can stop men killing themselves (Telegraph UK)
- Stop Male Suicide on Dads On The Air (30 minute interview)
- Seven ways to understand male suicide in Australia (The Big Smoke)
- Male Suicide: we have to name the problem to deal with it (Courier Mail)
- If this was happening to women, we’d call it a gender issue (Huffington Post)
- Three strategies that can’t help stop male suicide (Guardian Australia)
- Comments of the week (The Conversation)
- Mansplaining Podcast (40 minute discussion on male suicide)
- How can we prevent male suicide? (Living Now)
The work of the Stop Male Suicide project was featured at three conferences in 2016 including:
- The National Suicide Prevention Conference in Canberra
- Male Psychology Conference (UK)
- 14th International Symposium on Genital Autonomy
OUR PAPER ON MALE-FRIENDLY SUICIDE PREVENTION
In November 2016 we produced a paper on the need for male-friendly approaches to suicide prevention, in partnership with the Australian Men’s Health Forum.
A number of key organisations operating at a Federal and State level have committed to halving the suicide rate in Australia within a decade. As the peak body for men’s health in Australia, it is the view of the Australian Men’s Health Forum that this ambitious goal cannot be achieved unless we target resources at male-friendly approaches to preventing suicide and harness the experience and expertise of the men’s health and wellbeing sector.
Our paper outlines 10 recommendations to help stop male suicide in Australia and highlights some examples of good practice in male suicide prevention.
You can download a free copy of this paper here.
In November 2016, our call to “Stop Male Suicide” reached a global stage when it was adopted as one of the themes for International Men’s Day. Those adopting the slogan for the day included South Africa’s Gender Equality Commission, suicide prevention charities in the Channel Islands and a local council in Wales. The “Stop Male Suicide” theme was also mentioned in a debate in the House of Commons in London, England.
MAKING FRIENDS ON SOCIAL MEDIA
As well as meeting people in the “real” world, we’ve also been making friends and sharing information about male suicide prevention in the virtual world of social media. In particular, you can find the Stop Male Suicide project on:
LOOKING FORWARD TO 2017
This year, we plan to build on everything we learnt in 2016 as we continue to find ways to share the knowledge, the wisdom and the skills people need to take action to stop male suicide through our events, training and other resources.
If you’d like to come and join us at one of our seminars or trainings in 2017 then take a look at the links below, put a date in your calendar and reserve your place today:
Furthermore, if you’d like to explore ways to bring the Stop Male Suicide project to your are, then please get in touch at: StopMaleSucide@gmail.com.
There are many people and organisations who helped make 2016 a memorable first year for the Stop Male Suicide project. While it’s impossible to thank everyone who deserves recognition, we’d particularly like to acknowledge:
- Greg Millan at Men’s Health Services NSW
- Paul Mischefski at Men’s Wellbeing
- Pete Nicholls and everyone at Parents Beyond Breakdown
- Julian Krieg and everyone at the Men’s Health Forum
- The Western Australia Men’s Health Forum
- Australian Men’s Sheds Association
- Amanda Sillars and the Eeny Meeny Miney Mo Foundation
- Cindy Rochstein
- Jonathan Bedloe and Men’s Resources Tasmania
- Anthony Smith and the Australian Institute of Men’s Health and Studies
- Grant Westthorp, Men’s Resource Centre
- Martin Fisk and MensLink
- Tony Holland, OzHelp Foundation
- Jorgen Gullestrup, Godfrey Baronie and everyone at MATES In Construction
- Brendan Maher and everyone at RUOK
- Everyone who spoke at one of our events
- Everyone who attended one of our events
- Everyone who’s supported us on social medias
- All the people who buy the book, You Can Stop Male Suicide.