BURY will come together to shine a light on mental health and help save lives for World Suicide Awareness Day.

A number of events will be taking place in the borough over September 10 and 11 to help families and individuals and fight back against people taking their own lives.

On average there 18 suicide deaths every year in Bury ­— more than three-quarters of them men.

Mental health challenges can affect anyone at any time but people with drug or alcohol problems and mental health conditions are at increased risk of feeling suicidal.

Social isolation, job loss and financial problems can also contribute to the problem.

Ahead of World Suicide Awareness Day charities, support groups and the council are sharing the simple message: "It's good to talk, and we can help."

Councillor Andrea Simpson, cabinet member for health and wellbeing, said: “Contemplating suicide is a terrible situation for a person to find themselves in, and the aftermath is devastating for family and friends.

“But there are people who you can turn to for help at times of crisis, and talking about how you feel is one of the most effective forms of prevention.”

Over the next two days, from 10am to 3pm, staff from the Samaritans, Bury Council, the CCG and other Bury Suicide Prevention Group members will be offering support and a chance to talk at The Rock on September 10 and near the Fish and Meat Hall on Bury Market on September 11.

They will also be inviting people to complete a 20-minute Save a Life training programme.

To sign up to the programme visit www.shiningalightonsuicide.org.uk/suicide-prevention-training/.

There are also many services in Bury who can help at http://ow.ly/NJWY50vZpdi

Or you can call Samaritans on 116 123

And Greater Manchester Suicide Bereavement Information Service ­— a confidential information service for people bereaved or affected by suicide ­— 0161 212 4919.