CRUN focuses on self harm issues

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CAUSEWAY Rural and Urban Network wants to raise awareness of the links between self harm and alcohol abuse in the area.

CRUN will be holding a one-day skills based training course in Garvagh at the GADDA building on Tuesday, September 20 from 9.30a.m. to 4.30p.m.

This course is funded by the Public Health Agency in support of NDACT’s Local Action Plan and the Northern Area Promoting Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Partnership. It is essential for practitioners and community workers who come into contact with at-risk individuals.

The training will be an opportunity for cross-sector practitioners to bring their skills and knowledge to the wider community and to network with other professionals dealing with intoxicated individuals at risk of self harm.

The training will be delivered by Conor McCafferty from Zest. Conor recently completed a qualitative study on the effect of alcohol abuse on self-harm and suicidal behaviour as part of the MSc award in Counselling and Therapeutic Communication at University of Ulster which was published this year.

He has over 10 year’s experience of delivering training workshops on the issue of self-harm and suicidal behaviour as well as speaking at numerous conferences throughout Northern and Republic of Ireland.

Describing the importance of this training, Nicola Greer, Cross-Sectoral Training Officer with CRUN said, “CRUN are delighted to take forward this training, which is being rolled out for the second year, due to the positive outcomes and outputs of pilot training last year.

“It is hoped that the training will develop a strong, local network of informed and empowered health practitioners and community gatekeepers, who have an understanding of the links between self harm and alcohol and are better skilled to support people at risk.”

Madeline Heaney, Head of Health and Social Wellbeing Improvement, Northern area, PHA said: “Suicide is a growing problem within Northern Ireland and it is widely acknowledged that reducing suicide and its tragic consequences for families and communities is a top priority.

“This essential training for professionals who come into contact with at-risk and vulnerable people was developed from a need to address the lack of awareness surrounding the links between self harm and intoxication.

“We felt within the local partnerships that the clear evidence which links self harm and alcohol should be filtered down to those practitioners who come into contact with key target groups, patients and clients, especially those who present for treatment under the influence of alcohol.”

For further information and to register your place, please contact: Geraldine Wills, Causeway Rural & Urban Network on tel: 028 7034 4934 or email: to obtain a registration form.