NCPS | Organisational Member in the Spotlight: Introducing Suicide&Co

The UK Charity Offering 12 Free-to-Access Counselling Sessions to People Bereaved by Suicide

Over 5,500 people die by suicide in England and Wales every year (ONS). Research shows that for every death, an average of 135 people are affected, with 6 people being directly bereaved. Those bereaved are also 65% more likely to attempt suicide themselves than if their loved one died by natural causes (UCL report), with little to no state professional support currently available specifically for those affected by suicide loss.

It was with the knowledge of these gruelling statistics, alongside their shared lived experience of losing a parent to suicide, that Amelia Wrighton and Emma Morrisroe set upSuicide&Co in 2020. Meeting as colleagues while working in media, the idea for the charity was sparked one evening over a drink after work. The two discussed the lack of specialised support they had both received immediately after the death of their respective parents, the stigma surrounding suicide that had prevented conversations and delayed their grief, and the vital impact that counselling had eventually played in both of their grief journeys. Intent on providing that same level of support to others, Suicide&Co was born out of a drive to fill the gap in specialised care for people bereaved by suicide.

Suicide&Co’s Counselling Service provides up to 12 free-to-access counselling sessions to adults bereaved by suicide in England and Wales. Suicide&Co's service delivery also includes a Helpline which offers both emotional and practical guidance around suicide loss.

The Counselling Service, staffed by over 25 associate counsellors, delivers over 450 counselling sessions each month. Grounded in a person-centred approach, all counsellors receive six hours of onboarding training, including two hours specifically on suicide loss, plus an option to complete a two-day Applied Suicide Intervention Skills (ASIST) training course. As well as this, monthly group supervision and online check-ins for skill-swapping and sharing knowledge are both available to all members of the counselling team.

Beyond individual support, Suicide&Co offers a crisis response service to organisations who have lost an employee to suspected suicide, as well as a host of helpful digital resources for the suicide bereavement community including an app filled with journalling and meditation prompts, a sleep guide and grief programmes, and a dedicated Help Hub on their website with useful signposting information, stories of lived experience, and a collection of resources offering insights on emotional and practical support. Add to this a varied line-up of year-round events, fundraising initiatives, an annual Sector Summit and a community book club, and it becomes clear that Suicide&Co is leading the charge in providing the most far-reaching and inclusive suicide bereavement support in the UK.

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