Intentional self-inflicted death: KSG marks Suicide Prevention Day

Posted by: KSG-admin Post Date: September 14, 2020

Intentional self-inflicted death: KSG marks Suicide Prevention Day

By Ephline Okoth and Ruth Kiplagat

Commemorated annually since 2003, the World Suicide Prevention Day aims at raising awareness concerning suicide and the preventive measures around the act.

World Suicide Prevention Day focuses on and calls for a global action on campaigns and initiatives towards eliminating the intentional self-inflicted death.

The ongoing Coronavirus pandemic has triggered social and economic distress and has led to higher levels of suicidal tendencies, depression, anxiety, and psychological trauma among other notable negative impacts. To contribute to averting this distress, the Kenya School of Government organized campus wide awareness creation initiatives as the world marked the Day on Thursday September 10, 2020.

Visitors to the School as well as the public were treated to a display of posters with messages regarding this celebration. Staff of the School created these posters to enhance consciousness, not only to alert the public, but also to pass messages of hope, assurance, and support and called for shunning stigmatization.

Understanding and appreciating that every person has a role to play in preventing suicides, staff across the School went full throttle in participating in the commemoration.

Apart from the physical display, information was shared through social media platforms: Facebook and Twitter for wider reach. In this time of uncertainty, robust awareness creation on suicide becomes even more necessary.

“The Kenya School of Government, being a global player, is taking part in marking this day with the realization that we cannot assume that all is well. We are creating cognizance and sharing messages of hope with our staff, participants, and visitors,” said Mr. Samwel Kumba, KSG Manager Corporate Communications.

Mr. Kumba accentuated the importance of supporting, walking with and reminding others that they are important.

“There are many challenges and problems that we face as individuals. But when we speak up about them and share our thoughts with others, and also provide a listening ear, it becomes lighter to bear, consequently necessitating the much needed support. This could easily eliminate thoughts of suicide,” urged Mr. Kumba.

Those who came across the messages displayed appreciated the need and have called for more responsiveness. Many saw it worthwhile and timely when economic distress has pushed people to think of ways out, some even considering suicide.

Mr. John Ngige, a staff at Lower Kabete indicated that more still needs to be done. “What is the next step by the School after raising consciousness on this day?” he inquired, suggesting more forums and training on how to detect suicidal tendencies to help prevent future cases.

Experts indicate that early signs of suicidal tendencies may vary from  anger, distress, ridicule, anxiety, tension and fear. And as we reflect on this event, it is important to note that suicide is preventable and that we all play a role in supporting preventive initiatives.