Twenty-nine children committed suicide over a period of one year. They are part of the 770 people who committed suicide during the same period.
It is against this background that Abundant Life Ministries, in partnership with the Namibia Diamond Trading Company, held a campaign against suicide in Namibia. Suicidal thoughts are a sign of mental health conditions. It can affect anyone, regardless of age, gender, or background.
Suicide is often the result of an untreated mental health condition, and it has become a public health issue. September is marked as Suicide Prevention and Awareness Month, a time to raise awareness and bring a message of hope. The Abundant Life Ministries and the Namibia Diamond Trading Company held a campaign to do just that.
The Deputy Minister of Health and Social Services, Dr. Esther Utjiua Muinjangue, says these campaigns bring about improved knowledge, awareness, and behavioural change around matters of mental health and suicide. She further urged Namibians to seek help if they felt suicidal.
"This suicide awareness campaign is a significant step towards eradicating the stigma surrounding mental health and promoting a culture of openness, empathy, and support. By fostering conversations, providing valuable information, and showcasing the myriad of services available, this event strives to save lives and encourage those in need to seek help. Together, we can make a difference in the lives of individuals struggling with mental health challenges and help prevent the tragedy of suicide. Let's come together and, with one voice, say no to suicide, choose life, and seek help."
NDTC advocates for a spirit of care and support among its employees. The Manager of Corporate Affairs, Helena Mootseng, highlighted the need for corporations to get involved in discussions around mental health and the needs of the communities in which they serve. Organisations that offer mental health services were also present at the event.
This includes Philippi Trust Namibia, the Ministry of Health and Social Services' Mental Health Unit, and Let's Talk Psychologists.
Finding someone close to confide in is another remedy suggested.