Safe Havens for Respite from Suicide Ideation

The Association’s main goal of building Safehaven/s is a major priority. Obtaining funding for developing, building, and maintaining these is very important and why Sock-It-To-Suicide was created. Although the Association has a wonderful standing with the community, we are a not-for-profit organisation and receive no government funding. Thousands attend our Memorial Services; however, little revenue is raised; the services are primarily conducted to create education and awareness of suicide/mental illness within the community.

The closure of mental health beds, staff shortages and the lack of ongoing treatment have meant that community, family and caregivers are required to deal with mentally ill and suicidal persons. We believe that suicide/mental illness is a life-threatening condition and is the only illness in society where people are routinely refused hospital admission. In most cases, prescribed medication is required; however, this needs to be monitored closely by health professionals in a restricted environment until the patient is considered in recovery.

Our Safehaven/s will encompass our designed programs and assessments, including a full psychological/neurological examination, not just a mental health assessment. Our Safehaven/s will be there to treat both patients on an on-going basis and provide the support network the family/carers require.

What will the Safehavens look like?

Our aim is not to refuse suicidal people admission as currently happens, our programs will be designed to actively treat the underlying illness that leads to mental illness/suicidal behaviour with follow up treatment once the patient is deemed in recovery. Safehavens will be staffed with appropriate clinical personnel and provide a place of safety to the suicidal/mentally ill and their families/carers.

Our Safehaven/s will offer programs for the entire family structure affected by the illness, which will include:

  • Patient
    • Full 90-day treatment inpatient program
    • 30 – 60 day inpatient program (including follow-up treatment)
    • 8-week outpatient program (including follow-up treatment): this program will allow patients to continue to reside at home and work in the local community while they are being treated
    • 2-3 day outpatient assessment with recommendations and treatment advice
  • Family Members/Carer’s
    • 3 – 5 day program (All family members/Carers) offering information and education about suicide/mental illness and to assist family in identifying issues they may have.
    • 2-day children program (ages 3-12) This will offer ways for children to cope with the challenges they face positively, it will include information about suicide/mental illness through age-appropriate activities
      (families to be included and involved in all aspects of patient treatment/care)
  • Rehabilitation/news skills programs
    • To help the running of the Safehaven/s, programs will be set up where patients can learn new skills, which qualified teachers will staff. These may include:
      • Landscaping
      • Horticulture
      • Cooking
      • Cleaning
      • Computer skills
      • Front Office and Reception
  • New skills programs will be optional should the patient wish to participate once they have met certain criteria through their treatment.