Self injury Support, previously Bristol Crisis Service for Women, in 2018 celebrated 30 years of pioneering work around self injury. An estimated 200 women from the Bristol area have helped to run the charity over the past 30 years.

Over this time, rates of self injury in the UK, already some of the highest in Europe, have continued to rise, and current Self injury Support volunteers want others to know support is available: “A service like Self injury Support provides not only a safe space to share these feelings but somewhere they can be not only fully heard, but validated.”

Support and Understanding Make a Difference
As the longest established UK-wide organization tackling self injury, Self injury Support has seen 20% increases in the use of our services over the last six months across all age groups. And the impact of our work is clear, almost 70% of clients tell us they use our services to deal with urges to self injure, 28% of clients have returned to the service after gaps of several years, to deal with strong urges to self injure and 19% have used our support to stop using self injury altogether.

Emma used Self injury Support’s services for over four years after her self injury became increasingly dangerous and she started to abuse alcohol and drugs. Daily text support enabled her to make slow, but positive changes. “I started to use drugs and alcohol less, I got into a stable relationship and finished my studies, and at the same time managed to gain control of my self injury and then stop. I went through so much and the text service was always there.”

Kindness Goes a Long Way

Naomi Salisbury, Director, says “Many people are worried that talking about self injury will encourage it. This is not true, research and experience has shown over and over again that the time to talk and empathy our services offer are key in recovery around self injury. Kindness goes a long way, and this is something anyone can offer, as we also know that many people who use self harm never seek medical help. This Self Injury Awareness Day we challenge you to be brave and extend that kindness where previously you might have shied away.”

“For the next 30 years we aim to continue to reach people who need our support and let them know we are here, we will listen and we care.”

Advice on helpful responses to self injury can be found here.
Information about Self injury Support’s services can be found here.