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Mindful Employer Project Coordinator, Leigh Staunton, caught up with Papyrus UK Suicide Prevention, to talk about funded training, their Hopeline 247 and their debrief helpline.

Tell us a bit about Papyrus and your role there.

Papyrus is a suicide prevention charity organisation, found by Jean Kerr in 1997, a mother from Lancashire, she found this organisation after the loss of her son to suicide. It was initially a Parents’ Association for the Prevention of Young Suicide, which has grown into the name PAPYRUS, these parents have all lost children between age 13 and 34 to suicide.

For the past 26years, PAPYRUS has continued to listen to and learn from the experiences of those personally touched by young suicide. Today, PAPYRUS works in many ways to prevent young suicide.

I am a Community Development Officer with PAPYRUS

What support can Papyrus offer local businesses and organisations?

Support – We provide confidential support and advice to those struggling with thoughts of suicide, and anyone worried about a young person having thoughts of suicide through our helpline, HOPELINE247.

Equip – We have our trained Community teams across UK, engaging and supporting communities including local businesses and organisations in suicide prevention projects and delivering our education and training programmes.

Influence – We contribute to the local and regional implementation of national suicide prevention strategies. Our campaigning comes from our passion as individuals, parents, families, and communities who have been touched personally by young suicide. We press for change using campaigns as well as presenting evidence to those in power so lessons can be learned, and learning implemented to help save young lives. Check our Youtube page for our campaigns campaigns:- #Sinking Feeling- #BedtimeStories2

Can anyone access the Papyrus Hopeline 247?

HOPELINE247 is for

– Children and young people under the age of 35 who are experiencing thoughts of suicide, though we don’t turn people away and it’s a free and confidential service.

– Anyone concerned that a young person could be thinking about suicide can call HOPELINE247.

– Debriefing service

Tell us a bit more about that helpline and how it works.

HOPELINE advisers work with callers to understand why thoughts of suicide might be present. They also want to provide them with a safe space to talk through anything happening in their life that could be impacting on their or anyone else’s ability to stay safe.

If you are having thoughts of suicide or are concerned for a young person who might be you can contact HOPELINE247 for confidential support and practical advice.

Call: 08000684141

Text: 07860039967


Line are open 24 hours every day of the year (Weekends and Bank Holidays included)

We understand that not all callers will be able to, or would prefer not to speak English, Callers can still access support by requesting Language Line when calling HOPELINE247.

Can you tell us a bit about the Debrief Helpline available at Papyrus? How can use this and why might it be helpful to use it?

PAPYRUS HOPELINE247 debriefing service is for those with recent experience of suicide who want to talk about it, especially professionals service providers like GP’s, nurses, teachers, school nurses, A&E staff, pastoral staff, Mental health professionals: CAMHS staff, CPNs, psychiatrists, Education staff: teachers, lecturers, learning mentors, education social workers, Police, ambulance staff, prison staff, drug and alcohol services, probation workers etc.

HOPELINE247 Lines are open 24 hours every day of the year (Weekends and Bank Holidays included) to listen and support callers.

Suicide experience can be traumatic, PAPYRUS debriefing service provides a safe space for them to express their feelings, process the event, and receive emotional support. It also helps in identifying and addressing any immediate needs for further intervention or support. Additionally, debriefing can help prevent the development of long-term psychological issues and aid in the overall healing process for those affected by the event.

Tell us a bit about the different training courses you offer employers?

we offer SP-OT, SPEAK and ASIST suicide prevention training.

SP-OT (90 minutes) Suicide Prevention – Overview Tutorial. This covers the prevalence and impact of suicide and places emphasis on the language used and challenges faced when discussing suicide. We will discuss how to recognise the ‘signs’ that may indicate someone is having thoughts of suicide and consider how we can all contribute to creating a suicide safer community.

SP-EAK (3.5 hours) Suicide Prevention – Explore, Ask, Keep-Safe: An introduction to Suicide Prevention skills. This covers the attitudes, myths and stigma surrounding suicide and explores the signs that may indicate someone is having thoughts of suicide. We will look at how to have open, safe and sensitive conversations about suicide with a person having thoughts of suicide and how we can support them through the use of a safety plan.

ASIST (2 days) Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training: A skills building workshop that prepares caregivers to provide suicide first aid interventions.

We have some funded training openings in West Yorkshire and Barnsley. Members of these two communities can go to this training page and register to attend the training for free. Funded suicide prevention training in your area | Papyrus UK | Suicide Prevention Charity (

How has your training been received by local businesses?

Our suicide prevention training has been positively embraced by members of the communities, local businesses, and organisations we’ve engaged with. We’ve received encouraging feedback highlighting the value of the training in equipping individuals with the necessary skills and knowledge

to support themselves and those with suicide thoughts. We are continually working to ensure that our training meets the diverse needs of different communities.

Can you share any feedback with us?

“Fantastic training session. Really thought provoking and insightful. The session broached the difficult and challenging conversation of suicide and created a safe and encouraging space to explore the reasons of suicide, what signs to look out for, how to support and ask difficult questions, relevant support available and how you can off your support and help to each person who may be having suicidal thoughts. Thank you to you both for delivering training on such an important topic and something that can affect every single one of us. I will ensure to speak to others about Papyrus and the great training and support you offer!”

“The trainers were both amazing. Highly knowledgeable, very professional and delivered a difficult topic in a sensitive manner.”

Why should suicide prevention be on the agenda of managers and employers?

Suicide prevention should be a priority for managers and employers because employees’ mental health significantly impacts their well-being and productivity. By addressing suicide prevention, companies demonstrate a commitment to the mental health of their employees, fostering a supportive and inclusive work environment. Moreover, it helps in reducing absenteeism, enhancing employee morale, and ultimately contributing to a more productive and healthier workforce. Prioritizing suicide prevention also aligns with corporate social responsibility, showcasing an organization’s dedication to the well-being of its employees beyond just the workplace.

How can our network members book your training?

Local businesses and organisations can contact us to train their staff and team members.

We also have some funded training openings in West Yorkshire and Barnsley for members of those two communities. Your network in West Yorkshire and Barnsley can also benefit from this project by registering to attend the training for free using this link

A big thank you to Papyrus for contributing to this blog.

Want to get involved?

Join the Leeds Mindful Employer Network here.

Don’t miss out on our next free in-person event on the 19th March hosted by our Mindful Employer of the Quarter, AW Hainsworth, “Overcoming Stigma: Mental Health Awareness and Support at AW Hainsworth”. You can book your place here.

Did you know tickets are now available to book for our FREE Leeds Mindful Employer Network Conference 2024, “Creating Mentally Healthy Workplaces” at Leeds Beckett University, Carnegie School of Sports. Demonstrate your commitment to the positive mental health of your workforce by registering your free place here.