Around the world, people show support for suicide awareness and prevention by wearing a suicide awareness ribbon. What is the story behind these ribbons? And what do they mean? This blog post will answer those questions and more.
What Is A Suicide Awareness Ribbon?
A suicide awareness ribbon is a symbol meant to bring awareness to the public about suicide. The ribbon can be worn by individuals as a show of support, or it can be hung in public places as a reminder that suicide is not simply an individual problem but one that affects many people. Wearing or displaying a suicide awareness ribbon is just one way to show how important the issue of suicide prevention is to you.
Where Does The Suicide Awareness Ribbon Come From?
The International Association For Suicide Prevention (IASP) launched a universal suicide prevention awareness ribbon in 2016 with the hope that it would become globally recognizable, much like other ribbons for other worthwhile causes.
Following a survey of colors and ribbons used to promote suicide prevention awareness across the world, yellow and orange were the two most prevalent colors, so the ribbon was designed using these two colors. However, other variations have been created with colors ranging from purple to teal.
The two-toned ribbon used for this campaign is meant to represent the light of a candle flame. This connection works well with the IASP “Light a Candle” campaign* as well as the candlelit walks that many arranged around the globe for World Suicide Prevention Day.
What Is World Suicide Prevention Day?
World Suicide Prevention Day (WSPD) is observed on 10 September every year. It was founded in 2003 and is a major advocacy and communication effort that aims to reach national organizations, governments, and the general public with a unique message about how suicide may be prevented. The day was created in order to bring attention to a problem that kills close to 800,000 people globally each year and affects many more.
In addition to raising awareness, WSPD is also about empowering individuals and communities to take action against this preventable tragedy. There are many ways to get involved with WSPD. One way is to wear a suicide awareness ribbon. This small act can help start a conversation about suicide prevention and let others know that you are there for them if they need someone to talk to.
Why Do People Wear Suicide Awareness Ribbons?
People wear suicide awareness ribbons for many reasons. Some may have been personally affected by suicide, while others simply want to show their support for the cause. Wearing a ribbon is one way to start a conversation about suicide prevention.
5 Ways To Get Involved With Suicide Awareness
There are a lot of ways to help spread suicide awareness and prevention. Here are five ways you can get involved:
1. Wear A Suicide Awareness Ribbon
This is the most visible way to show your support for suicide prevention. Wearing a ribbon can let others know that you are there for them if they need someone to talk to.
2. Educate Yourself About Suicide
If you want to be an effective advocate for suicide prevention, it is important that you educate yourself on the topic. This means learning about the warning signs, risk factors, and how to have a productive conversation with someone who may be in crisis.
3. Spread The Word On Social Media
Use your platform to share accurate information about suicide and how it can be prevented. You can also use social media to promote events or fundraisers related to suicide awareness and prevention.
4. Volunteer With A Local Suicide Prevention Organization
Many organizations rely on volunteers to help with their suicide prevention efforts. There are a variety of ways you can volunteer, such as manning a crisis hotline, participating in community outreach, or providing administrative support.
5. Make A Donation
If you are unable to volunteer your time, consider making a financial contribution to an organization working to prevent suicide. Your donation will help them cover the costs of their programs and allow them to reach more people with their message.
Where To Get A Suicide Awareness Ribbon
You can purchase a suicide awareness ribbon from a variety of online retailers, or you can make your own.
If you would like to make your own suicide awareness ribbon, you will need the following supplies:
- Ribbon (any color)
- Safety pins
- Cut a length of ribbon that is approximately 12 inches long.
- Fold the ribbon in half, and then fold it in half again.
- Thread the ribbon through the safety pin, and then pull the ribbon through so that there is a loop at the top.
- Tie a knot at the base of the loop, and then trim the excess ribbon.
Your suicide awareness ribbon is now complete! Wear it with pride and show your support for those who are struggling with mental health issues.
The Suicide Prevention Ribbon is a way to bring attention to suicide prevention and show support for those affected by this tragedy. If you or someone you know is in crisis, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 998 or text “HOME” to 741-741 to reach the Crisis Text Line. These services are free and available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Help is out there. You are not alone.