Help prevent suicide this August

Samaritans volunteer, Isadore, who lost her husband to suicide when her daughter was 7 years old, wants to save other families from going through what her family did.

Media release: 1 August 2018

Samaritans annual street appeal is being held on Friday 10 August and Saturday 11 August, calling for donations to help fund its helpline service.

Funds are urgently needed so Samaritans can continue to answer more than 30,000 calls a year from people struggling with loneliness, depression or contemplating suicide. 

Your donation would make a huge difference.  “For the price of a cup of coffee you could help save someone’s life”, Samaritans volunteer, Isadore explains.

Isadore lost her own husband to suicide 16 years ago when her daughter was only 7 years old and decided to volunteer for Samaritans to help others who were thinking of taking their own lives.  “I wanted to help people who felt like they had nobody else they could talk to, to let them know that they are not alone, and that they may not believe it, by they won’t always feel this way.” 

She also wants to help other families to avoid the devastating grief of losing a loved one to suicide.  “I don’t want anyone else to go through what my daughter and I did, when my husband died.  It was so hard.”

People call Samaritans for many different reasons. They may have lost their job and be struggling financially.  They may be going through a relationship breakdown or have recently lost a loved one.  They might be struggling with mental illness and/or addiction or they might be victims of bullying or family violence.

Whatever the reason people call, Samaritans provide support and guidance to help them get through the difficult time in their life, before they reach crisis point. 

New Zealand has the highest rate of youth suicide in the OECD and last year 606 New Zealanders died by suicide, with thousands more admitted to hospital after serious suicide attempts.

Samaritans helps those who fall through the cracks of New Zealand’s flawed mental health system.  However, Samaritans receives no government funding. 

Donations received will go towards training volunteer telephone counsellors and paying the phone charges and other costs associated with running a 24 hour helpline service.

“I urge people to give generously to Samaritans Appeal, because we are the ones at the front-line doing something to help prevent suicide” says Isadore.

You can donate $3 by texting HOPE to 5785, or online at samaritans.org.nz/donate.

To talk to someone at Samaritans call 04 473 9739 or 0800 726 666.