The founder of a suicide prevention charity has revealed the role two Big Issue vendors played in saving her life during a mental health crisis.
Joy Hibbins, the founder and director of Suicide Crisis, said two homeless men selling the magazine in Gloucester stepped in to help her after she checked herself out of a psychiatric hospital in the city in a suicidal state.
Writing in The Huffington Post, Hibbins recalled how the vendors stopped to check if she was okay, reassured her and gave her details of a hostel when they saw her wandering the streets. ““You’ll freeze out here overnight,” they said, offering me a blanket. They were genuinely worried for me.”
The fact that total strangers cared was a powerful reminder of the goodness, selflessness and wonderful generosity of spirit within people
“The kindness and care which they showed me had a very powerful effect,” she added.
“I had expected to go unnoticed on the streets. The fact that total strangers cared, gave their time and went out of their way to help was a powerful reminder of the goodness, selflessness and wonderful generosity of spirit within people.”
Hibbins went on to open a Suicide Crisis Centre in Cheltenham. She advocates an expansion of suicide intervention skills training courses, so more people know the best way to approach and talk to someone in a vulnerable state of mind.
“We all have the potential to help save a life,” she said.