A health and wellbeing charity in the Black Country will launch a new suicide bereavement service in the region thanks to a near £30,000 donation from a local building society.
Staff and customers at the West Brom have been supporting The Kaleidoscope Plus Group over the last 12 months, raising a total of £28,000.
The charity, which is based on Halfords Lane in Smethwick, is one of the largest voluntary sector providers of health and wellbeing services in the West Midlands and works to tackle the stigma surrounding mental health.
The money handed over by the West Brom will enable The Kaleidoscope Plus Group to employ a suicide bereavement co-ordinator who can manage and deliver its new service.
The charity’s Chief Executive, Monica Shafaq, said: “The fantastic fundraising efforts of people at the West Brom have resulted in them donating a significant amount of money and we are hugely grateful to everyone who has contributed.
“Suicide is a major issue right across the country – 15 people die in the UK due to suicide every day and more men under the age of 45 die as a result of suicide than road traffic accidents, HIV and assaults combined.
“There is a concerted effort to try and reduce those figures, but we also know that when there is a suicide it’s important the right support network is in place. Help is needed for those family members, friends and colleagues left behind, which is the thinking behind our planned bereavement service.”
During the year West Brom colleagues have organised cake sales, raffles, sponsored walks, fun runs and a golf tournament in order to collect donations.
More recently, nine teams took part in the West Brom Charity Cup, a five-a-side football competition held at Goals Dudley in Rowley Regis.
Ashraf Piranie, Group Finance and Operations Director at the West Brom, said: “The Kaleidoscope Plus Group has certainly struck a chord with everybody associated with the West Brom and we are proud to have raised this amount of money for a charity that does so much for people going through emotional and mental difficulty.
“The official fundraising may be over but I’m sure the relationship will continue to develop in ways which will provide a direct benefit to the charity and our staff.”