Pete's Dragons team helps to launch first-ever nationwide suicide prevention project in Malta

Published: 12 November 2018

‘Inspirational’ training from an Exmouth-based charity will help launch a nationwide project to prevent suicide and support families struck by tragedy in a country 2,000 miles away.  

Pete’s Dragons has been chosen by Victim Support Malta to provide the vital guidance and coaching needed to launch the scheme – a first for the Mediterranean island.

Coaching from the Devon charity means that SPOT - Suicide Prevention, Outreach and Therapeutic Services – can be launched in Malta before the end of the year.

Victim Support Malta chairperson Julianne Grima, services co-ordinator Karl Grech and psychotherapist Amber Knights spent a week in Exmouth and will now head home to train the rest of their team.

The project will also support family and friends who have lost people to suicide, as well as those who have attempted suicide or are at risk.

Julianne praised the ‘passionate and knowledgeable’ Pete’s Dragons team delivering the training and hailed the week as ‘inspirational’.

She added: “There’s a huge sense of camaraderie and we’re looking forward to working together again in the future – Pete’s dragons will come to Malta so we can share best practices.”

Amber added: “It’s been a really supportive experience that’s left us nourished and excited to get started.”

The selection of Pete’s Dragons to train Victim Support Malta for its nationwide scheme further enhances the reputation of the Devon charity, which helps suicide bereaved families across the county, as a leading force in the UK in providing specialist and bespoke training.

In-house courses were developed by Pete’s Dragons especially for the week.

These included modules on bereavement and loss; the specifics of suicide bereavement and loss; facilitating peer support groups, wellbeing recovery plans and boundaries at work.

Alison Jordan, founder and CEO of Pete’s Dragons, said: “It’s a real honour to be chosen as the organisation that Victim Support Malta wanted to do their initial training with before they start up their service.

“We put together a bespoke package of training for them. Because it has been such a success, we will now be able to start rolling this out across the UK.”

The Exeter Road-based charity was founded by Alison after her brother, Pete Wicks, took his own life in 2010 at the age of 24.

Victim Support Malta, a Non-Governmental Organisation, provides emotional and legal advice to all victims of crime. SPOT is being funded by the Marigold Foundation.