Blackburn with Darwen Council hosted its second annual public vigil outside Blackburn Town Hall to mark World Suicide Prevention Day on Tuesday, September 10.
Blackburn Central High School were invited to take part. Two of our Anti-Bullying Ambassadors, Lela and Nicole, represented the school.
The proceedings started with a multi-faith service at Blackburn Cathedral, where candles of remembrance were lit for the victims of suicide, followed by a procession to the town hall where the vigil was held.
The main part of the vigil was a 40 second silence held at 11.40am to signify the fact that in their ‘eleventh hour’ one person dies of suicide around the world every 40 seconds.
Nicole and Lela placed a pair of shoes, along with the 46 other pairs of coloured shoes on the steps of the town hall to signify the 47 people in Blackburn with Darwen who have taken their own lives this year.
Nicole was very moved by the event: “The heartfelt ceremony was so captivating, not to mention tear jerking, that is plucked at the heartstrings of everyone who heard it.”
Tony Harrison said: “I’m delighted that Blackburn with Darwen is leading the way on this and sending a strong message to the rest of the country that our community will bring suicide into the open and tackle, what is still the darkest of taboos, head-on. Making our borough a stigma free zone is vital to suicide prevention and the whole local community can play a part in helping to achieve this by coming along and showing their support.”