For some time now there has been a worrying trend in our society, whereby for various reasons people have been resorting to taking their lives. Guyana has been reported to have the highest suicidal rate in the Caribbean, and in some quarters has even been referred to as the suicide capital of the world.
When an individual decides to take their life by whatever means, they are hardly ever aware of the pain they cause relatives and friends when they suddenly plunge those people into sorrow and grief brought about by the passing of that loved one. Very often, it is after the passing of that loved one, after that individual would have taken matters into their hands by ending their life that people become aware that there were indications that the individual may have been crying out for help, or may have been displaying suicidal tendencies which were not noticed nor heeded. Hence the need in our society for heightened suicidal awareness which can lead to a reduction of the suicidal rate in our society.
GROLAWAGT, Golden Grove – Lovely Lass – Onverwagt, culture and drama organization on the West Coast of Berbice has been making quite an effort to be counted among the groups which would have sought to promote suicidal awareness and prevention among young people, and on Monday November 6, with the blessings of the Education Department Region Five, was able to host a number of secondary school students at the Latchmansingh Primary School Annex.
The participants were privileged to have presentations by Chief Probation Officer in the Ministry of Social Protection, Mrs. Oslyn Smith, and Psychologist within the Ministry of Public Health, Dr. Balogun Osunbiyi.
During the discourse, participants were told that each individual is precious in the sight of the Creator, and that whenever an individual decides to take their life they kill whatever dreams or aspirations they would have had since one cannot realize their aspirations after death. They were also told that each person was created for a purpose, and that there is a hero in each individual, therefore it would be worthwhile realizing ones potential rather than to give in to pressures which may lead to suicidal thoughts or actions.
The participants were told that they could help persons who may be experiencing difficulties by asking questions if they realize that such persons have begun to display strange behavior like becoming withdrawn, or they may be making statements which may turn out to be a hint that they may be considering suicide. For example, a young person, contemplating suicide may tell a friend that they are making their will, or that they have completed making a will. In some cases it may be advisable to get other people involved by reporting unusual behavior to an adult, or anyone who may be able to help the individual.
When people commit suicide, especially the young, they are depleting valuable resources of the nation, since they would have brought to a premature end a life that if lived to full capacity, could make a significant contribution to the society in some form. Therefore, heightened suicidal awareness in the society would have become necessary since there is a need to reduce the alarming suicide rate in the society.
The Golden Grove, Lovely Lass, Onvertwagt, GROLAWAGT, Culture and Drama Organization mainly through Ismay Dalrymple, one of the founders of the group, has been seeking to heighten suicide awareness and prevention, having recognized that there have been a number of cases in the district over the years, and they are of the view that the effort would yield greater results if the focus is on the young people since they are the future of the country, henceforth targeting secondary school students.
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