Suicide Prevention Forum to Harness Global Knowledge and Local Insights to Deliver Practical Solutions


The 2021 Western NSW Regional Suicide Prevention Forum will be held in Dubbo on Tuesday May 4th and Wednesday May 5th, bringing together community members and suicide prevention specialists with a focus on one of the region’s most challenging issues.

Hosted by Western NSW Primary Health Network (WNSW PHN) at Dubbo’s Rhino’s lodge, the two-day event will be an opportunity for attendees to hear the latest developments from across our region, continuing and developing strategies and feature a number of guest speakers.

Guest speakers for the event include Leilani Darwin of the Black Dog Institute, who will present an update on the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Lived Experience Unit, SANE Peer Support Lead Immie Wijeratne, who will speak on addressing stigma in our communities, and Associate Professor Simon Rosenbaum of the University of New South Wales, who will present details on looking after the whole person and the mind/body connection.

"Bringing together people who have the knowledge and lived experience is essential to developing effective strategies to prevent suicide in western NSW, according to WNSW PHN Acting CEO Robert Strickland.

"The suicide rate in Western NSW is higher than the state average and WNSW PHN is developing and delivering localised strategies to address common sources of distress, such as isolation and disconnection from family, friends, community and culture,” said Mr Strickland.

“We also wish to support communities to expand their knowledge, skills and confidence in being able to recognise the signs that someone may be going through hard times and provide appropriate support."

Mr Strickland added, "Suitable approaches to suicide prevention differ across our varied communities and a tailored local response, based on input from local workers and community members, is essential for this challenging issue, especially in rural and remote areas and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities."