TRAINING PROGRAM: Thirteen participants from across Banana Shire attended the three-day CALM train the trainer program last weekend.
TRAINING PROGRAM: Thirteen participants from across Banana Shire attended the three-day CALM train the trainer program last weekend. Contributed

Reducing regional suicide

CENTRAL Queensland Rural Health is working with communities across the region to reduce suicide.

Biloela barber Steve Bates was one of 13 participants from across Banana Shire to partake in the three day CALM train the trainer program held last weekend.

Mr Bates said he found the program "really insightful” and learnt how to recognise people at risk and guide them through the CALM procedure to alleviate suicidal tendencies.

"I was approached by Deirdre Fagan-Pagliano, from Central Queensland Rural Health, as someone who might be a likely candidate and I jumped at the opportunity,” he said.

"The prevalence of suicide is far more commonplace then we are given the impression of because a lot of the statistics are hidden within other statistics.

"We don't hear about it often enough. This really needs to be unpacked and talked about a lot more often because depression can affect every single one of us at any given time.”

Mr Bates said the main reason behind wanting to run the free training courses within the community was to keep his clients safe.

"Also, to look after my clients on a personal one-on-one basis and to also extend these skills I have learned out to the community to try and assist other people and that may be people at risk of suicide,” he said.

"I care about each and every person in the community. I love living in a small country town and I understand the heartache and suffering that can come due to suicide.”

Central Queensland Rural Health chief executive officer Sandra Corfield said the three day CALM train the trainer program held in Banana last weekend was a success and is part of Central Queensland Rural Health delivering the Central Queensland Suicide Prevention Plan.

"Participants from across Banana Shire are now trained to deliver a six-hour training session to help people have conversations with friends, family or colleagues thinking about suicide,” she said. "It will increase community confidence to respond to people in pain and help them to stay safe.

"The participants from Moura, Biloela, Baralaba and Theodore are willing to travel across the shire to deliver this essential training.

People interested in training can contact Deirdre from Central Queensland Rural Health by email on Deirdre.Fagan- Pagliano@cqrdgp.com.au or phone 49921040. Residents can complete free online training ourphn.org.au/prevent suicide/

For help or information call Lifeline: 131114 www.lifeline.org.au , Suicide Call Back Service: 1300659467 www.suicidecallback service.org.au, beyondblue: 1300224636 www.beyondblue.org.au


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