SUDBURY -- Sept. 10 is World Suicide Prevention Day, a day aimed at increasing awareness and reducing the stigmas surrounding suicide.

Butterflies have long been a symbol of suicide prevention, representing hope, peace, and renewal. The Suicide Safer Network in Sudbury handed out butterflies Thursday for people to release outside of Public Health Sudbury and Districts on Paris Street as a way of showing their support.

As a group of community members and organizations in Greater Sudbury and Manitoulin region, Suicide Safer Network offers support and resources to those struggling with mental health. Their message this year is “working together to prevent suicide.”

“Year after year, we hear the stories of how this day impacts people,” said Sue Tasse, manager of clinical services at the Canadian Mental Health Association. "We hear these stories, every time we do these events. We hear the story, we hear the pain … We hear the stories around people saying we need to do more.”

The Canadian Association for Suicide Prevention estimates that each day in Canada, 10 people end their life and 200 make a suicide attempt. About 3,000 Canadians die by suicide each year.

“To make our community suicide safer, we need to be sharing stories of resiliency as it can save lives,” said Shana Calixte, manager of mental health and addictions at Public Health Sudbury and Districts. "For that reason, it is important to emphasize stories of resilience when disseminating information about suicide."

Ways you can prevent suicide and promote life:

  • Share stories of resilience
  • Include information about life promotion when you talk about Suicide Prevention
  • Talk about all the resources available
  • Remind people that healing takes time

More information can be found here.

“I have grown from the experience of losing my dad,” said Jared Plante. "I have also learnt that you never know what the other person is going through. I have also learnt that something as simple as a smile or asking if they are alright will make such a difference to somebody."

Suicide Safer Network announced Thursday they will be giving away 200 free licences for ‘LivingWorks Start,’ an online suicide prevention training for everyone 13 and older.

“The pandemic has created new challenges for nearly everyone,” said Michelle Lasalle, co-chair of the Suicide Safer Network. "People are struggling with increased stress and anxiety. Suicide prevention skills are needed more than ever, and we’re doing our part to help by offering LivingWorks Start for free."

If you or someone you know is in crisis, here are some resources that are available.

Crisis Services Canada (1-833-456-4566 or text 45645), Centre for Suicide Prevention (1-833-456-4566) or Kids Help Phone (1-800-668-6868) offer ways of getting help if you, or someone you know, may be suffering from mental health issues.

If you need immediate assistance call 911 or go to the nearest hospital.