Suicide is the act of intentionally taking your own life. Suicide is best understood not so much as a movement toward death as it is a movement away from something and that something is always the same: intolerable emotion, unendurable pain or unacceptable anguish. Reduce the level of suffering and the individual will choose to live.
Suicidal feelings can range from being preoccupied by abstract thoughts about ending your life, or feeling that people would be better off without you, to thinking about methods of suicide, or making clear plans to take your own life.
If you are feeling suicidal, you might be scared or confused by these feelings.
But you are not alone. Many people think about suicide at some point in their lifetime.
How you might think or feel
What you may experience
– hopeless, like there is no point in living
– tearful and overwhelmed by negative thoughts
– unbearable pain that you can’t imagine ending
– useless, unwanted or unneeded by others
– desperate, as if you have no other choice
– like everyone would be better off without you
– cut off from your body or physically numb
– poor sleep with early waking
– change in appetite, weight gain or loss
– no desire to take care of yourself, for example neglecting your physical appearance
– wanting to avoid others
– self-loathing and low self-esteem
– urges to self-harm
Suicidal feelings can be overwhelming. How long these feelings last differs for everyone.
It is common to feel as if you’ll never be happy or hopeful again.
But with support from family and friends, doctors, and mental health professionals, and self-help, the majority of people who have felt suicidal go on to live fulfilling lives.
The earlier you let someone know how you’re feeling, the quicker you’ll be able to get support to overcome these feelings.
Tips for coping/ overcoming Suicidal thoughts:
Remove anything you could use to harm yourself or ask someone else to remove these for you. If you are in an unsafe location, move quickly
Tell someone how you are feeling. Telling someone else how you are feeing can help you to feel less alone and more in control.
If you are thinking of harming yourself, find self-harming coping techniques that work for you such as; holding an ice cube in your hand until it melts and focus on how cold it feels, tearing something up into hundreds of pieces.
Focus on your senses. Taking time to think about what you can smell, taste, touch, hear and see can help to ground your thoughts.
Avoid taking drugs as it can make you feel worse. If you can; get a glass of water, eat something if you are hungry, sit somewhere comfortable, and write down how you are feeling.
Get outside. If you are feeling numb, feeling the rain, sun or wind against your skin can help you to feel more connected to your body.
Make a deal with yourself that you won’t act today.
Find your reasons to live. Like;
Write down what you are looking forward to, whether it is eating your favorite meal, seeing a loved one or catching up on the next episode of a TV show.
Make plans to do something you enjoy tomorrow or in the near future. Plans don’t have to be big or expensive
Repeating to yourself that you can get past these feelings can help you regain hope and focus on getting through it. Remember that the thought about killing yourself are just thoughts and you do not have to act on them.
Spend time with people who you like and trust.
Learn from others – reading about other people who have managed difficult times can be inspirational.
Refugee & Asylum Seekers Emergency Psychological Aid
Lesvos Camp, Moria
Providing clinical emergency psychological aid to Afghan unaccompanied minors in the Lesvos refugee camp Lesvos Camp, in Moria.
Campaign against gender-based violence
Magenta & UNDP
The campaign aims to challenge the idea that violence is a solution to home conflict. In order to deescalate domestic tension and create a harmonious home the campaign presents talking and listening as an alternative resolution path, rather than lashing out in anger.
Developing and implementing trauma rehabilitation to professors and admin staff at the university. The professors then will work with their students to psychologically support them after the critical incident.
Clinical Supervisor of Staff
Afghanistan Capacity Development and Educational Organization (ACDEO)
Orchestrated staff training for answering client phone calls, executing emergency referrals, and managing crisis phone calls on the emergency hotline. Facilitated training and educational staff programs on the foundations of mental health.
Organized and coordinated with WHO and the Mental Health & Psychosocial Support Network (MHPSS) working group in Afghanistan, to prepare strategic plans, TORs, and mapping for the sustainability of the working groups. Put together protocols, manuals, minimum standards for MHPSS, as well as psychological guides for their teams in Afghanistan and served as key liaison for MHPSS throughout Afghanistan. Guided and fostered relationships with all relevant MHPSS stakeholders and providers within Afghanistan and abroad, working closely with the Ministry of Public Health (MoPH).
Conducting initial needs assessments and identifying how CORE Response can effectively leverage its resources, leading a MHPSS team to support Ukrainian refugees in Polish border towns. Mapping existing MHPSS services, connecting with local partners and
Protection Case Management
International Rescue Committee (IRC)
Providing technical advice and supervision to IRC’s Protection Team based in Afghanistan. Producing a comprehensive report to inform Protection staff with limited knowledge on mental health on the situation in Afghanistan, the core principles of MHPSS and to outline potential strategy for integrating MHPSS into Protection response. Adapting and delivering training on MHPSS to Protection staff, and facilitating skill-building in case management.
Mental Health and Psychosocial Training and Support
Designing and implementing training on basic MHPSS principles and facilitating group counseling sessions for reproductive health staff at MSI in Kabul. Building capacity of the staff to independently lead counseling sessions for their colleagues.
Psychosocial Resources for Caregivers
Designing and creating mental health and psychological tools and resources for caregivers and children affected by the crisis in Ukraine. Our team directed and produced short films focused on showing culturally appropriate and relevant skills building for those experiencing displacement and trauma, and then disseminated these to the target population.
External Evaluation of the project Mitigating the potential impact of the COVID-19 Crisis on the Peace Process in Afghanistan
Conducted a final external evaluation of the implementation of Geneva Call’s Afghanistan project. Our team developed key research questions, conducted fieldwork in Kabul, and produced a final evaluation analyzing to what extent the organization had mitigated potential impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic on the healthcare of vulnerable populations.
POMA was awarded a $10,000 grant by Choose Love. Our team coordinated with Click.af to purchase, package and distribute aid packages of food and sanitary products to vulnerable families in Kabul. Additionally, we collected and paid electricity bills for families.
Guidelines and Quality Standards on legal assistance for children in conflict with the law (CLEAR-Rights Project)
A joint project with Asylex, with our teams collaborating as psychology expert and legal expert, to elaborate on the guidelines and quality standards of legal assistance of children in conflict with the law in Europe. This report will contribute to the ‘CLEAR Rights: enhancing legal assistance for children in Europe’ project, strengthening access to quality and specialized legal aid for minors in Europe.
Training approx. 25 Seefar counsellors in Kabul on providing mental health related guidance to people who have experienced trauma. The organization works with migrants who have migrated primarily with economic motivations, not due to conflict.
Coping with War through God: Islamic-Based Counselling and the Promotion of Peace and Mental Health in Armed Conflicts
Princeton University & Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (JPAL)
Through this pilot study, we will conduct a randomized experiment in Kabul, Afghanistan, to assess the impacts of basic cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) sessions that incorporate Islamic beliefs and are delivered by trained religious clerics. The randomized experiment will examine the role of Islamic-based counseling in helping civilians cope with the adverse psychological effects of war and fostering support for peace and reconciliation.
Developing and coordinating a training program for staff working in the Kabul office, raising awareness of workplace harassment, the psychological effects, and providing management with tools for the establishment of a complaints system.
Developing and implementing a strategic vision for over 400 employees and their areas of responsibility, performing career counselling and acting as a platform for employee concerns. Providing clinical psychological support to employees, psych education to managerial staff, and promoting the overall health and well-being of all employees.
GIZ Airport Study
GIZ (The Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit)
POMA’s team has developed methods to respond to the psychological trauma post terrorist attacks throughout Afghanistan and implemented them after several traumatic events in Kabul (Wedding Incident, MSF Hospital Attack, University and School Events).
Provision of technical advise to a national consultant responsible for conducting a case management capacity assessment across three districts. Development and support for the implementation of a capacity building plan for CPAN and CP actors in Ghor, Afghanistan.
The feasibility study “Strengthening Women, Promoting Peace, Networking Across Countries, Enabling Education: Better Integration of Refugees and Internally Displaced Persons in Host Communities in Pakistan and Afghanistan”, a project funded by TDH Germany (10%) and the BMZ (90%), assesses in borderland geographies of Afghanistan to what extent it is possible to implement measures for improved livelihood and integrated living situations for refugees/returnees and IDPs as well as host communities over the course of five years in the provinces of Nangarhar and Paktika.
De-Escalation Training and First Psychological Care after Stressful Events Training for PME in Afghanistan
Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit, GIZ
PoMA entered the project as contracted end. As such our insights, in contrast to the mid-term narrative report provided, offer an overview of implemented projects as well as the implications of the end phase of the project on the beneficiaries as well as implementing partners on the ground in Kabul and Mazar-e Sharif. To provide a deeper understanding on the implementation of project activities in the province of Balkh and Kabul, this section of the report provides an overview of general project activities and discusses challenges and limitations in the evaluation of the implementation of set targets documented.
Psychological Support and Employee Assistance Program
Conducted extensive literature searches using prominent social work and psychology databases on topics including childhood trauma, juveniles, trauma and correctional settings, policy reform, juvenile rehabilitation and laws for juveniles.
Emerging Issues in Juvenile Forensic Evaluation Practice and Policy
An examination in age-based differences in “knowledge” regarding the role of counsel, presumptions about counsel, and maturity of judgment when making decisions about whether to waive the right to counsel, funded by the National Institute of Health. Along with emerging issues for Juveniles Forensics evaluation, practices and policies.
Mental Health Awareness Campaign in Afghanistan Leading a mental health awareness campaign on behalf of the Ministry of Public Health across Afghanistan and spanning a year with multiple messaging channels.
MHPSS Working Group – MOPH Action Against Hunger
ECHO – WHO – ACF – MoPH
https://www.who.int/ , https://moph.gov.af/en
Development of working group MHPSS Afghanistan: Preparation of SOP, Qualifications for PSS Workers, strategize for providers and stakeholders in Afghanistan
Migrants and Asylum Seekers Psychological Aid and Support
Prepare project implementation period through conducting a safety audit visit, training delivery and testing of interview tools. This includes: Support the analysis, key findings and report writing Developing the training materials
Kandahar Critical Incident Psychological Response
Resolution Support – NATO, US AirForce, Northrop Grumman
March 2020 in response to the crash of a U.S. Air force E-11A Battlefield Airborne Communications Node (BACN) aircraft in Kandahar on January 27 2020. Individual and group psychological counselling was provided to deal with grief and trauma which revealed some insight into some ongoing challenges and recommendations for personnel going forward.
Psycho-Social Support (PSS) interventions in Afghanistan
The core activities proposed will be to develop and conduct a needs assessment, develop PSS toolkits and training packages, and to train emergency teams on basic Psychological First Aid (PFA) principles so that they can incorporate these into their work.
Department of Defense (DoD) combatting trafficking in persons (TIP) training and awareness. PoMA provided culturally sensitive training to 500+ employees to ensure that TIP policies and procedures are implemented.