Norfolk suicide support group marks 21 years
A suicide bereavement group has come of age after 21 years of helping people in Norfolk.
The Norfolk Suicide Bereavement Group was established in September, 1990 to provide either group or individual support for those bereaved by suicide.
The group carries out an initial home visit, but also runs relaxed group evenings and in 2009 it established Lifeline - a 24/7, one-to-one telephone support service.
Following an initial phone call, the group offers regular one-to-one telephone support. Contact with a caller is maintained for as long as needed, using the same befriender to establish a rapport with the caller. Whenever possible the group endeavours to match volunteer to caller.
Norman Smith, from Norfolk Suicide Bereavement Group, said: 'We try to make our evenings as relaxed as possible. 'Those who have attended the group for some time can not only see how they have progressed, but they also receive considerable comfort helping others.
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'Often those who have suffered a loss as a result of suicide are themselves suicidal, and accessing the group enables them to work through their own suicidal feelings.
'Since the group was established it has supported well in excess of 1,000 families.'
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In the past 12 months Lifeline has received 230 calls, 25 of which resulted in long term befriending.
The group and Lifeline can be contacted on 01263 768604, and its website can be found at www.suicidebereavement.co.uk.