Self-Expression Through the Arts
The young person on the precipice of suicide is isolated, alone, focused on the self. Communicating with the outside world is difficult. At our community drop-in centre, we’ve created a milieu in which we can accommodate young people. They are given the place, and the tools, to express themselves. They can find a seat at the table of life. They can carve out their niche. We draw most of our clientele from Hochelaga-Maisonneuve, where many young people are “taggers,” graffiti artists. So our centre was baptized: “Café Graffiti.”
By channeling young creative energies in positive directions, we let these young people live their dreams. We give them goals to strive towards, creative ways to harness their abundant energies. A young life takes on meaning. This is at the foundation of our suicide prevention strategy. It’s a way that tackles a number of other social ills and youth problems too.
Book excerpt from Quebec Suicide Prevention Handbook (2014), Éditions TNT
Suicide Prevention Hotlines:
Québec: 1-866-APPELLE (277-3553). CLSCs can also help you.
Canada: Canada Suicide Prevention Service 833-456-4566
U.S.: The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-TALK (8255).