The Eden Programme is unprecedented in Ireland and is both unique and creative in its approach. The Eden Programme was established by SOS to provide a safe space for those in need who have attempted suicide or have had suicidal thoughts. It provides a supportive weekly group environment over a 6 monthly period in which up to ten to twelve participants per programme become more aware of their own psychological states and can develop tools to manage their own wellness, a range of supports in their own community and can move away from suicide as an option of first choice in times of crisis.
The Eden Programme is an in-depth programme which recognises that for an individual to look at the possibility of life rather than death will take time. That is why this programme is confidential and closed, and runs for 26 weeks.
The OVERALL AIMS
- (a) empower participants to make appropriate choices in terms of their day to day lives and more particularly in times of emotional crisis,
- (b) reduce the potential of death by suicide by the participants, and
- (c) increase awareness of suicide and suicide prevention while also addressing the stigma that exists around mental ill health.
‘Take action now for your mental wellbeing’
Suicide or Survive through The Eden Programme brings resources to the community by making available a subsidized innovative outreach program.
Anyone who has attempted suicide or has had suicidal thoughts can apply to be part of this six-month programme. Places are limited and an assessment is part of the procedure for group formation.
The weekly sessions are held in a safe, confidential environment in order to foster individual resilience, coping skills and resource awareness.
Suicide or Survive (SOS) is grateful to Darndale Belcamp Village Centre and Kiltalown House for their collaboration and support as part of SOS’s national strategy to provide the Eden Programme nationwide.
The next Eden Programme will run in Dublin City Centre in the Autumn 2016. We are now recruiting for this programme which will run on Wednesdays from 10am to 1pm.
If you would like more information on this programme please contact Noeleen at Suicide or Survive – we would be delighted to hear from you.
By phone or Email.
Telephone Lo Call: 1890 577577
Development and Roll Out of the Eden Programme
- The Eden Programmes have been evaluated by DCU.
- Follow-up studies have taken place with those who have completed the Eden Programme
- Staff Training manual has been developed
- Staff Supervision protocol has been developed to be used in all Eden Programmes in the future.
- Licencing system for the Eden Programme.
- Partnering with the HSE in Galway & Mayo to train & mentor teams to deliver the Eden Programme in these areas.
- Continually approaching mainstream service providers throughout the country with a view to offering them the opportunity to gain a licence to deliver the Eden Programme as part of their own service provision.
Testimonials from Eden Programme participants:
- “As a participant of the Eden Programme I know now that to ask for help is not a sign that I am going back to the dark place all over again, I just need some support to help me stay safe while I cope and deal with my feelings and thoughts”.
- “As a participant of the Eden Programme I have learned that while I have been here that there is more to me than an illness”.
- “As a participant of the Eden Programme I have learned that if I do not take the support one day I will succeed in killing myself”
- “The one thing the Eden Programme has given me that no other programme ever has is the strength to have a life, to be me, to be able to cope.
- “This programme has given me my life back so that I can cope with life without trying to keep killing myself”.
- “I have been through some dark places this past year but I have been given support to help me to fight for my life, my right to live”
- “I am learning to ask myself what is wrong with me and what supports do I need now”
- “A sense of ACCEPTANCE as I am right here and right now – is probably one of the most important experiences of being part of the Eden Programme”.
- “I experienced Hope for the future – there is one”
The programme is in line with Strategic Goals 3 and 4 of Connecting for Life: Goal 1: To target approaches to reduce suicidal behaviour and improve mental health among priority groups; Goal 4: To enhance accessibility, consistency and care pathways of services for people vulnerable to suicidal behaviour. This programme is run to the highest standards of practice and service delivery and is underpinned by an evaluation framework as required by ‘Connecting for Life’.