On world Mental Health Day (10 October) a suicide prevention text message service encouraging more men to “open up” has been launched by The Kaleidoscope Plus Group.
The hotline will be open to people of all ages and available 24/7. In 2018, the charity released figures showing that 84 men in the UK die by suicide each week.
Anyone texting the hotline looking for support or guidance will receive an instant response from a trained volunteer committed to keeping an individual safe and signpost them to access support services.
The Kaleidoscope Plus Group– a charity working to promote and support positive mental health and wellbeing – has had backing from many different avenues. Officially launching the hotline at Solihull Moors FC, the hotline has been supported from £15,000 being raised during the clubs matches.
Fundraising included participation from 36 football teams, alongside former footballers, in memory of a football coach called Nick Mowl, who took his own life aged 41 in 2017.
Of the hotline, chief executive Monica Shafaq said: “Men don’t open up as much as women. I do think that’s changing [with] the likes of lots of sporting personalities and celebrities who’ve come forward and openly said they’ve had mental health issues.
For people who may not feel able to table about mental health concerns for fear of judgment, Monica added: “We wanted to take that away as a barrier. You can text someone. You have that conversation, but via text instead.”
If you are in need and want to contact the hotline, text TeamKPG to 85258.
For additional support the Samaritans are available 24/7, 365 days a year on 116 123.