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Spireites Support World Suicide Prevention Day

1 September 2017

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The Spireites will be helping to raise awareness of World Suicide Prevention Day on Saturday.

The club is working alongside Derbyshire County Council and various local and national organisations in order to engage with fans on the subject of mental health.

James Creaghan, Derbyshire County Council's senior public health manager, has collaborated with the Spireites Community Trust. He said: “Each year, many people are in the situation that they want to take their own life.

"We want to raise awareness, encourage people to talk about it and encourage people to access relevant services.”

The council is teaming up with the Derbyshire Healthcare Foundation Trust, the Samaritans, Cruse Bereavement and other voluntary organisations before the match, with volunteers situated around the ground to talk to fans.

Creaghan stressed the importance of the club’s involvement. “It’s great that the football club is involved, as it allows us to engage with people who don’t normally engage," he said.

"Men typically don’t go their GP, but a lot of men come to football matches, so it’s an ideal opportunity for us to raise awareness.”

The volunteers will provide fans with leaflets providing information and engage them in conversation on the subject of mental health problems as well as asking them to fill out a survey.

A consultant psychiatrist will be on site and there will be activities such as shooting at an inflatable keeper and free haircuts.

One Spireite knows all too well about the devastating impacts of suicide on families. Scott Fullwood’s son Aaron became depressed in April following the breakdown of a relationship and took his own life at the age of 25.

Scott said: “It’s hard, it really is. It came as a complete shock to everybody and we're all missing him terribly."

Scott urged people who spot signs of mental health problems affecting anyone close to them to act. “Get people involved in day to day activities and make sure they get out and aren’t cooped up in their bedrooms," he said.

Creaghan added that it is important for people to know what services are there, and how to help someone who is suffering from mental health problems. “People can seek help themselves, through their GP or even through family members," he pointed out. 

“A lot of mental health support is about having someone to talk to and we are hoping to raise general awareness about mental health so that people know how to support someone."

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