Minister Fernandez observes World Suicide Prevention Day | Western Cape Government


Minister Fernandez observes World Suicide Prevention Day

10 September 2021

Today, Friday, 10 September 2021, the Western Cape Minister of Social Development, Sharna Fernandez, is observing World Suicide Prevention Day (WSPD) to create awareness that every person in society can play a role in suicide prevention.

WSPD is organised by the International Association for Suicide Prevention (IASP) and endorsed by the World Health Organization (WHO). The event represents a global commitment to focus attention on suicide prevention. 

The international theme of WSPD this year is ‘Creating Hope Through Action ‘as a reminder that there is an alternative to suicide and aims to inspire confidence and light in all of us; that our actions, no matter how big or small, may provide hope to those who are struggling.

“The prolonged COVID-19 pandemic has increased feelings of despair, insecurity, and at times, hopelessness amongst our loved ones, colleagues and community members. 

Now more than ever, must we all express empathy, compassion and caring for those around us.

Let us all go above and beyond to ensure that everyone around us feels supported,” said Minister Fernandez.

“If you are struggling emotionally, please do not hesitate to share your thoughts and feelings with people that you trust so that you do not have to face what you are going through alone.

If you or someone you know is feeling like all hope is lost, we are offering help and support,” added Minister Fernandez.

With the support of its Non-Profit Organisations (NPO) partners and its volunteers, the provincial Department of Social Development (DSD) utilises various awareness programmes integrated with psycho-social interventions. 

The Department has also formed partnerships with various NPO partners, Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) and Faith-Based Organisations (FBOs), to establish support groups in vulnerable communities for individuals and families in need of support.

Psycho-social support and bereavement counselling are also being provided by the Department to individuals and families, which has been tailored to meet the specific needs of a client. The support being provided include; debriefing, counselling, psychotherapy and cognitive behavioural therapy.

Contact number and further information:

  • Lifeline

Helpline: 0861-322-322

  • The South African Depression and Anxiety Support Group

Helpline: 0800 21 22 23 (8am to 8pm)

Helpline: 0800 12 13 14 (8pm to 8am)

SMS: 31393

  • Childline: Children have this option to contact Childline if they are depressed, suicidal or need assistance with any other form of psycho-social support.

Tel: (+27)-(0) 21 762 8198



If anyone requires any form of psycho-social support, contact us on our hotline on 0800 220 250 to be connected to your nearest local office.

We urge the public to access credible information on

For more information about our other services, please refer to the Western Cape Department’s Website below:

Media Enquiries: 

Joshua Covenant Chigome

Spokesperson for the Minister of Social Development, Minister Sharna Fernandez

Tel: 021 483 9217

Cell: 083 661 4949