In a bid to raise awareness on suicide prevention in India, Twitter India on Monday announced a partnership with non-profit organisation White Swan Foundation in which the company will provide them with #adsforgood grants to help them reach more people. Twitter in partnership with the International Association for Suicide Prevention also launched a special emoji for the World Suicide Prevention Day that was observed on September 10 globally including in India. “Through our partnerships with International Association for Suicide Prevention and White Swan Foundation, we aim to create greater awareness around suicide and suicide prevention, connect with people and address mental health issues prevailing in our society,” Mahima Kaul, Head of Public Policy, Twitter India said in a statement.
The emoji will appear when people tweet with the hashtags #WorldSuicidePreventionDay or #WSPD. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), nearly 800,000 people die due to suicide every year — one person every 40 seconds. Twitter said that addressing mental health requires collaboration between all stakeholders — public, private and not-for-profit. “Twitter’s subscriber base has the potential to become crucial change agents in the society to question the norms and create a movement where the focus shifts to prevention and inclusive care,” said Manoj Chandra, CEO, White Swan Foundation.
The micro-blogging platform is increasingly witnessing mental health organisations in India offering critical services via digital channels and social media platforms that are relevant, widely used and reflective of the way society communicates. “Twitter has a dedicated reporting form for people threatening suicide or self harm and a specialised team who review these reports. “When they receive reports that a person is threatening suicide or self-harm, they will contact the reported user and let him or her know that someone who cares about them identified that they might be at risk,” the company said.