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Throughout lockdown, people bereaved by suicide joined an online community to create a quilt in memory of those lost to suicide in Greater Manchester. Now, it’s time to hear their voices.

Speak Their Name: Greater Manchester Suicide Memorial Quilt, which was unveiled at Manchester Art Gallery ahead of World Suicide Prevention Day 2020, is made of 54 unique squares, each one lovingly created by someone bereaved by suicide.

Now, the story of the quilt is being told in a booklet and film, giving a voice to those left behind and providing each contributor the opportunity to speak the name of their loved one and to share their story.

As well as remembering those lost to suicide, the quilt and accompanying booklet and film aim to raise awareness of the impact of suicide and the benefits of peer support and creative activities.

Rebecca Jackson, a fibre artist and mum bereaved by suicide who was commissioned by Greater Manchester Health and Social Care Partnership to run the project, said: “We want to tell the individual stories of those we have lost to suicide, to show the outside world that these are not numbers, they are human lives and real people left behind.

“Quilting has a long history of storytelling and calling for change. We hope that Speak Their Name will help raise awareness of the impact that losing a loved one to suicide has and to be part of Greater Manchester’s history.”

The Speak Their Name group has now grown to over 100 members, who support each other and have an opportunity to talk about the person they have lost while continuing to take part in crafts and other creative activities.

If you’ve been bereaved by suicide, you are invited to join the online community and take part in monthly creative activities. Visit facebook.com/SpeakTheirNameGM

Read the stories behind each square in the Speak Their Name booklet here or by clicking the image below.

Speak Their Name cover

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