Cowbridge: Talk on teenage suicide forms part of national safeguarding week

By Ellyn Wright

12th Nov 2021 | Local News

The Founder of The Jacob Abraham Foundation will be giving a talk on teenage suicide as part of National Safeguarding Week.

Nicola Abraham lost her son, Jacob, to suicide in 2015 after he attended a rave at university where a toxicology report indicated he took alcohol and recreational drugs.

At 2pm next Wednesday, she will speak about suicide prevention, intervention and support.

It is one of a series of presentations taking place remotely throughout the week, which runs from November 15 to 19, around this year's theme of Mental Health and the Population.

National Safeguarding Week occurs annually and is coordinated by each of the Regional Safeguarding Boards in Wales.

In Cardiff and the Vale, there will be a range of events on topics including dementia awareness, harmful gambling and the effect of the pandemic on various groups.

Some are pitched specifically at professionals within a particular field, but others are open to anyone interested in a subject.

In her workshop session, Nicola aims to:

  • Reduce the stigma surrounding suicide.
  • Provide an understanding of the contributing factors to suicide and warning signs.
  • Increase confidence to communicate compassionately if an individual is concerned about someone
  • Provide practical skills to promote safety planning with someone who has expressed suicidal thoughts.
  • Support and signpost families, friends, colleagues and communities who are bereaved by suicide.

"Jacob's death deeply shocked his family and friends," said Nicola. "It raised questions about the complexities of mental health, particularly as Jacob was well known as a happy, fun young man, who loved sport, his job and was extremely popular within his community.

"The idea is to raise awareness of mental health and in doing so reduce the stigma and encourage open conversations about mental health. We would like to ensure that people know who to speak to about their concerns, which could prevent them feeling that suicide is their only option.

"We believe Jacob's suicide was an impulsive response to experiencing a 'come down'. Sadly, this contributing factor has been reported by many other families and we have since set up CO-ALC ALLIANCE across South East Wales to tackle this issue in young men and women. Mixing drugs and alcohol can significantly increase risk-taking and suicidal behaviour. We are working with Cwm Taf Morgannwg Suicide and Self Harm Sub-Group to produce leaflets and workshops."

As part of a three-strand plan to help address teenage suicide, the Jacob Abraham Foundation focuses on prevention by increasing knowledge and the confidence to support someone experiencing suicidal thoughts.

It encourages intervention by providing one-to one support sessions that create a safe space where the person feels listened to, supported and understood.

Bereavement support is also offered to anyone who has been affected by a suicide loss.

For more information about National Safeguarding Week and the events taking place, visit


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