A CUMBRIAN MP met with a volunteer group to discuss issues around suicide and the importance of talking about mental health.

Rory Stewart, MP for Penrith and The Border, spoke with volunteers from Suicide Safer Eden (SSE) a group who work towards reducing loss of life to suicide within the area, to discuss about how these issues can be addressed within the community.

SSE explained how they believe suicide is a community wide public health issues and that everyone can do something to help.

The group encourage people to be 'helpfully nosey' and ask others how they are feeling, listen to them and direct them towards help.

SSE host public sessions to raise awareness and look at the facts and figures around suicide. The volunteers talk about what people can do to help prevent suicide such as being aware of the 'signs'.

Today is Time to Talk Day - when people are encouraged to talk about their mental health. Time to Change, which started the initiative argues conversations about mental health helps break down stereotypes, improve relationships, aid recovery and take the stigma out of something that affects everyone.

After the meeting, Mr Stewart said: “Talking about mental health is so important and can make a real difference to people’s lives.

"It was really interesting talking to the volunteers at Suicide Safer Eden, who are doing some great work to raise awareness of suicide, and learn more about how everyone can help prevent suicide."

The group say if you are struggling with your mental health they encourage you to contact your local GP or contact Samaritans on 116 123.