SOS is very active in a range of activities in the community.
The objective of SOS is :
- To listen and offer support to 'survivors of suicide' - those who have been bereaved and are grieving by losing a loved one through suicide
- To raise public awareness that SOS exists and to prevent suicide through education and public awareness
- Reduce stigma and serve as a support service for those touched by suicide
SOS already has a presence and we are continuing to evolve. Our vision for the future is optimistic and we continue to make every effort to raise our presence to support others.
Lost a Loved One to Suicide?
We hold monthly bereavement support groups. These meetings are informal, confidential and non-judgemental, providing attendees with the opportunity to meet others who have been affected by suicide.
SOS Ballarat meet on the 4th Tuesday of each month from 7:00pm to 9.00pm
A second support group session will be starting from the 10th of December 2016:
2nd Friday of each month from 11.00am to 1.00pm
Location: Front Pod, Eastwood Leisure Centre, 20 Eastwood Street, Ballarat
Contact Kristy Steenhuis: 0427 762 929
SOS Gippsland meets on the 2nd Tuesday of each month from 7:00pm.
Location: Newhaven Secondary College, Boys Home Rd, Newhaven
Contact Jillian: 0413 056 165
Awareness & Prevention are Key
SOS was founded as a bereavement support service, however, much of the work done by Kristy Steenhuis and her team of dedicated volunteers is around suicide awareness and prevention. As an organisation, if we can prevent just one suicide, all our hard work will be worthwhile.
If you are considering suicide, please get help!
Talking about Suicide to Reduce the Stigma
There is still too much stigma around suicide. We need to keep the conversation going so that people feel more comfortable talking about suicide – especially if they are considering it themselves, or if people are worried that someone is going to kill themselves – as well as supporting those who have lost a loved one to suicide.
Healing Hearts & Brumbies
Our equine program supports those who have lost a loved one to suicide in helping deal with their grief. The program has already had great success, especially with teenagers who have suffered a loss.
We are currently seeking sponsors for this program, so pleases contact us you are interested in supporting this program.
National White Wreath Day
National White Wreath Day is held annually on the 29th of May around Australia.
National White Wreath Day, in remembrance of people who die by suicide, was founded by Fanita Clark, with the White Wreath Association Ltd organising a National Suicide Remembrance Day each year.
The public encouraged to lay photographs, flowers, wreaths, poems and sentimental memorabilia for those lost to suicide.
SOS organises White Wreath Day in Ballarat.
Here are the details for 2016:
Sturt Street, Ballarat – outside the Town Hall
Live Music: 11.00am – 3.00pm
Memorial Service: 12.30pm – 1.30pm
Depressed or Suicidal? Get help now!
There is help available - you just need the courage to reach out and make contact with someone who can listen and who is there to help you.
We know you must be feeling alone but you don't need to be. There is always someone who can help and who you can talk to 24 hours a day.
These support services are confidential and have professional counsellors who are there to assist you when you need it.
We urge you to call any of the following 24 hour support services.
Lifeline: 131114 | www.lifeline.org.au
Suicide Help Line: 1300 651251 | www.suicideline.org.au
Kids Help Line: 1800 551800 | www.kidshelp.com.au
Beyond Blue: 1300 224 636 | www.beyondblue.org.au
Mental Health Information Line: 1300 789 978
Sane: 1800 18 7263 | www.sane.org
SOS participates in this network which is a not-for-profit, community-driven Incorporated Association committed to opening up the conversation about suicide, reducing stigma surrounding suicide and increasing access to suicide prevention services.
The network comprises community, government and service providers who all share a common aim – the prevention of suicide in our community. The network meets on the 3rd Wednesday of each month. Contact us to find out more.
Find out more at: www.suicidepreventionballarat.com.au
Volunteer, Donate or Sponsor SOS
We are always looking for volunteers, donors and sponsors to help us deliver bereavement support services to those who have lost a loved one to suicide - as well as promoting suicide discussion and prevention.