Cornwall Sports Partnership attends the 3rd Cornwall Towards Zero Suicide Conference.

Funded by the Duchy Health Charity and delivered by Public Health in partnership with Cornwall Foundation Trust, Samaritans and others, Cornwall held its third Towards Zero Suicide conference on Tuesday 23rd May at the Knowledge Spa on the Treliske Hospital site.

The conference aims to raise awareness of the impact of suicide on the population of Cornwall & Isles of Scilly, engage a wider network of organisations and individuals who will commit to playing a part in preventing suicide and increase public confidence in intervention to support individuals at risk.

The CSP delivered a workshop focusing on the role sport and physical activity can play in improving the mental health of our population. This followed on from the keynote delivered at the previous conference by State of Mind, a mental health charity, that use the power of sport to reach out to others that could be suffering and encouraging them to talk about it.

A small group of delegates attended the workshop delivered by Tim Marrion, Partnership Manager at the CSP and agreed the important role sport and physical activity can play to improve mental health in Cornwall. The group agreed some actions the CSP will take forward in partnership with Public Health. Tim Marrion commented 'It was great to be part of these conferences and showcase the work we do to demonstrate the power of sport and physical activity, it is such an important issue and if we can help just one person to talk about their mental health problems then it is worth it'

Sara Roberts from Public Health went on to say 'Through this workshop, the CSP has initiated a really important conversation about the relationship between physical activity and mental wellbeing, and I'm very excited to see what action it will lead to. There is huge potential for people to experience the mental health benefits of physical activity and for the sporting community to lead the way in tackling any stigma attached to mental illness.'

The CSP has already signed up to the Sport and Recreation Alliance Mental Health Charter and have a referral into activity programme in partnership with Pentreath Mental Health Charity called 'Fit For Life' which includes additional training of sports coaches and specialist mental health workers.

Following these three conferences the network including the CSP and Public Health plan to deliver a portfolio of Zero Suicide projects focusing on the role sport and physical activity can play on mental health.

If you wish to understand more about the work the CSP does in this area or to be involved then please contact Tim Marrion at the CSP on tmarrion@cornwall.gov.uk or visit http://www.getactivecornwall.co.uk/inclusion/mental-wellbeing/