World Suicide Prevention Day (WSPD) is an awareness day observed on 10 September every year, in order to provide worldwide commitment and action to prevent suicides, with various activities around the world since 2003. We students from the 1st year MSCP, Sampurna Montfort College joined together as a team of 37 and performed a street play in Gopalan Signature Mall, Old Madras Road on 28 Sept’18 at 4:00 pm.
We were planning this event for quite some time as what best can be done to create awareness to the public. We also reached out to FCC for some brochures and leaflet to be distributed to the public. At the same time, we were also looking for places where we could get maximum crowd to bring awareness. We tried reaching to different malls, few denied and few accepted on chargeable basis and only Gopalan Signature mall supported the cause and also didn’t charge us and they agreed to let us perform. Eventually the class started brainstorming ideas and thoughts for the event, and we decided to do a street play on preciousness of life.
We had a dedicated team specially working on the script for the street play. The entire class was enthusiastic about giving their support by participating in the street play to accomplish the objectives of the suicidal awareness program. Since we had a very short time to practice, all who were participating in the street play stayed back after class hours to rehearse as well as to make placards including some of the props which the individual made it from home. Each one equally showed their interest towards this event. We were divided into small teams so that we could work better and be productive.
Below are the teams:
On the event day, we had one final round of rehearsal and we left to the venue from college in teams around 3:00 pm. On reaching the venue we met the mall manager and asked for any guidelines to be followed. Since there was not much of crowd we waited for some time for people to gather and also explored places where we could get the maximum number of people. We started the play at 4pm near the entrance at ground floor and we had few public watching us, and slowly people gathered listening to our loud claps and cheers. We also witnessed people taking our videos and photos. We believe it will reach out to people in need of hope. The street play was for 15 minutes, soon after the street play we distributed the brochures and leaflets of the counselling and suicidal helpline and also conveyed the message verbally in English and Kannada. We congratulated each one of us for their united effort to make this event a success and we dispersed from the venue in few minutes.
For most of us, it was a first-time experience to perform in public and performing something like this with creating awareness was a challenge, as we need to keep in mind every role we play we need to be sensitive to the concept and also not disrespect any character we portray. But with each one’s suggestion and contribution we brought the best message we could give to the public.
It is imperative that each one of us do our bit to raise awareness not only on the occasion of World Suicide Prevention Day, but throughout the year. It is important that the topic of mental illness be brought into the mainstream companies, schools, colleges and other institutions so that we are able to collectively create a group for those who suffer in silence. Whether it is writing about it on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, spreading awareness and having discussions, it all starts with us.
These are the slogans used for the street Play:
“If you are looking for a sign not to kill yourself, this is it”
“Every life matters, so does yours”
“I made it, so will you”
“When you feel like giving up, just remember the reason why you held on for so long”
“Suicide is not a permanent solution to a temporary problem”
“You have the power to say, “This is not how my story will end”
“Suicide doesn’t end the pain, it just passes it on to someone else”
“Lend a hand to save a life”
“Your story isn’t over yet”
“Inside you, there is hope”
“Life is precious”
“This is not the end, you are not alone”
We would like to thank, Sudarshan our class mentor who encouraged us to do an event for a cause, the Computer lab in charge for offering us support with the printouts, office in charge for letting us use the Audi for practice and housekeeping for providing us props.
1st year MSCP- MLCU
Photos of the street play :