There is help out there. These are 24-hour hotline if you need to talk:
Suicide Prevention Service: 2382 0000
The Samaritans: 2896 0000
The Samaritan Befrienders has extended its online chat forum from 8pm to 2am at help4suicide.com.hk
HKFYG Counselling Service: 2777 8899
HKFYG uTouch Portal has an online chat forum from 2pm to midnight (Monday to Saturday) at utouch.hk
A youth counselling service has received 102 cases relating to suicidal thoughts or attempted suicide so far this year, compared to 127 cases for the whole of last year.
Hsu Siu-man, of the Hong Kong Federation of Youth Groups (HKFYG), said this figure was alarming, especially since the service received 44 cases in 10 days. She also expressed concern over the string of student suicides this month after two more young people took their lives at the weekend.
A 20-year-old Polytechnic University student jumped to her death on Sunday in Tseung Kwan O. Police said it is suspected the girl – studying to become a mental health nurse – was suffering from stress. PolyU said it would step up its counselling service to monitor students’ mental health.
This follows the death of an 11-year-old girl, who also jumped to her death on Saturday. The Primary Six student was found outside a block of flats in Sha Tin.
Hsu gave Young Post readers some advice as to how to respond if you see people you know asking for help on social media. “Send a private message showing you’re responsive and supportive,” said Hsu. “Messages like ‘add oil’ aren’t constructive. Instead, try ‘I’m here for you’, or just listen to them.”
Vincent Ng Chi-kwan, executive director of the Suicide Prevention Service, advises everyone to be open-minded and not scared to ask for help. “Many students don’t want to talk to others because they are scared of what others will think. It’s vital not to hide ... they need to be listened to by someone they trust.”