Suicide Prevention theme for Mental Health Awareness Week

Megan Jones

Image Credit: DCU Mental Health Society

Mental Health Awareness Week took place last week with a number of events taking place across the campus and Dublin City.

The theme for this years’ campaign was ‘Suicide Prevention’ as decided by the World Federation for Mental Health.

The Mental Health Society took part in the campaign by holding a ‘Nostalgia Nite’ on Thursday 10th October, which was also World Mental Health Day.

Chair of the society Dean O’Reilly stressed the importance of having campaigns such as Mental Health Awareness Week.

“More than 60 per cent of students report clinically relevant levels of anxiety, stress, and depression based on the USI’s Student Mental Health Report and we as mental health societies do our best to provide students a space to be open and honest with their experience,” he said.

However he continued that not enough is being done by our government to help those suffering with their mental health.

“I hope the week reminds those in power of the clear necessity to commit to improving mental health care and access; something we haven’t seen in this year’s budget,” he said.

St Patrick’s Mental Health Services also took part in the promotion of Mental Health Awareness Week with a pop-up radio show called Walk In My Shoes Radio (WIMS FM).

Broadcast live from St. Patrick’s University Hospital, WIMS FM aired over 70 hours of live programmes dedicated solely to promoting positive mental health.

Final year DCU International Business student Abigail McDonnell was invited to speak as a guest on the pop-up radio show. 

McDonnell said it was “such a wonderful experience and so nice to get to share my story and my experience with such a large base of people,”.

The final year student urged fellow students to not be afraid to reach out for help.

“Sometimes with college, work, friends and family, it’s hard to put your own well-being first, Mental Health Awareness Week is a reminder that it’s not selfish to look after yourself or ask for help,” she said.

McDonnell is passionate about spreading awareness on mental health topics and is heavily involved in numerous mental health charities, such as SeeChange and Jigsaw. She also writes occasionally for Shona.ie, a website dedicated to empowering women. 

McDonnell also has a Mental Health Podcast called “Alittlegail Asks” which is now on it’s second season and as available on Spotify.

Megan Jones

Image Credit: DCU Mental Health Society