Some ace news: one of the city’s finest homegrown charities, CALM, has announced they are to run their helpline seven days a week.

Previously, their phone service – aimed primarily (but not exclusively) at younger men – ran just a few days a week, but an “unprecedented increase” in donations means that it’s now able to run all week round. Brilliant, right?

It’s important that this happened eventually – suicide is the biggest killer of young men in the UK, and since CALM’s launch in 2000 the suicide rates on Merseyside have dropped 55%.

They make a lot of effort to reach out to guys – there’s magazines, brochures, adverts, websites, gigs and TopMan partnerships – and it’s finally starting to pay off. It’s a bittersweet triumph, though, as much of the fundraising that enables this expansion is due to donations from friends and families who’ve had to experience these horrible, unnecessary deaths.

Other great CALM news this week, too: they’ve teamed up with the rather good EastZEast restaurant, where, by ordering certain dishes on the menu, you’ll be donating money to the cause. That’s as good an excuse as any to go for that Indian, then.

CALM recently released a book detailing their first decade-and-a-bit: read our feature with the author.

Helpline lines now open 7 days a week, 5pm – midnight.
CALM Nationwide: 0800 58 58 58
CALM London: 0808 802 5858
Text CALM1 to 07537 404717

Calm is free, anonymous and confidential.

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