two young men talking on a hillside
Two young men one with his hands on his hips looking at the sunset talking

Talking about the “S word” on World Suicide Prevention Day

 Today on World Suicide Prevention Day, it is important to know that help is out there for anyone who is feeling at risk. Suicide is the biggest killer of people under 35 in the UK, according to PAPYRUS, a charity for the prevention of suicide in young people.

Anyone of any age can have mental distress and suicidal thoughts. Talking about these feelings, however raw and upsetting is extremely important; whether you are having these feelings yourself or know someone else who is. Every suicide is one suicide too many and taking steps to prevent suicide such as knowing where to seek help for yourself or others is crucial.   

The University Counselling Service

If you or someone you know is feeling suicidal there is help available inside and outside the University. The University Counselling Service offers a range of interventions; from one-to-one counselling and Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT), group counselling, workshops and self-help materials as well as the Peer Support Programme.

The Counselling Service aims to promote good mental health and support students with psychological distress, as well as linking up with NHS mental health services for students with more severe mental health problems and those in a crisis situation. Through these interventions, as well as supporting the welfare work of all those involved at college, departmental and student-led support, the University aims to help reduce the possibility of students harming themselves.

Where to go for support

Find out about the range of support available from the University’s Counselling Service on the Counselling and mental health pages, make an appointment to speak to someone, or contact the Service directly

Samaritans is available for everyone. Call 116 123 or Email or in an emergency dial 999. 

HOPELINEUK is a dedicated helpline for people under 35. Call 0800 068 41 41, text 07860 039967  or email

Oxfordshire Mind have more information about prevention and support from the wider Oxford community and a list of partners who can help.

Togetherall, an independent online community that is free for Oxford students.

Find out more about Wellbeing at Oxford.  

Further information

The Counselling Service is an active member of the Oxfordshire PHE Multi Agency Suicide Prevention Group and provides training for staff on student mental health, including how to identify suicide risk factors to a large number of staff in academic departments and colleges. Last academic year training was specifically aimed at departmental staff working with Postgraduate students and college domestic staff.