A NEW suicide prevention charity has been tackling new ground around Furness.

The countrywide charity Every Life Matters, which has launched in Barrow, held an event at Askam Rugby Club, which was supported by Coop Askam.

The event raised awareness of suicide prevention and the services available to the public.

Project training manager Juliet Gray said: “The event was a success where we had brave people stand up and speak about their experiences and attempts at taking their own life.

“We know the majority of people who take their own lives are not in contact with mental health services – we need to see it as a community-wide issue.

“An Adult Psychiatric Morbidity survey revealed suicidal thoughts are relatively common and that one in 17 of us will have thoughts of suicide.

“It is vital we make suicide an ‘OK thing’ to talk about.”

The event was one which brought the community together after the sudden death of 18-year-old Jake Davies from Askam, who was found dead in December by the Duddon and Furness Mountain Rescue team in Ulpha.

Coop Askam manager Darren Miller said: “The Coop is proud to be part of the community of Askam and after the sad loss of Jake I felt it was necessary to bring education and awareness into the village.

“There is a stigma about suicide that we must get past to ensure it is talked about more. If we manage to save one life, then our efforts were worth it.”