Samaritans Suicide App

3 November 2014

By Lauren E. White

A genius app from the suicide prevention charity Samaritans has been launched to help people spot whether their friends could be at risk of taking their own lives.

The app will scan the chosen Twitter profile for phrases such as ‘hate myself’, ‘tired of feeling alone’, ‘depressed’ and ‘need someone to talk to’ in the quest to prevent as many suicides as possible. It doesn’t just stop at notifying the Twitter user that their friend is in danger, but offers them guidance and support for the best way to help.

Joe Ferns, Executive Director of Policy, Research and Development at Samaritans, suggested that app would continue to be updated as more data will become available.

“We know that people struggling to cope often go online looking for support, however, there is still so much we need to learn about why this happens and how we can make the online environment safer for vulnerable people,” he said.

“By not addressing this issue we run the risk of shutting these discussions down and driving them underground. Instead we need to use tools such as Samaritans Radar to encourage people to look out for one another online, helping them to reach out and offer support.”

Twitter’s Global Head of Trust and Safety Outreach, Patricia Cartes, said the company was ‘delighted’ that Samaritans had developed the application, and that the social network ‘actively forges partnerships with the organisations in the field of online safety and digital citizenship’.

The app is completely free and activated from the website To remain unobtrusive, it alerts its users by email rather than posting to Twitter directly.

Suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem, so if you are struggling with life right now, please contact one of the organisations below – they are here to help you:

Samaritans – 08457 90 90 90

ChildLine (under 18s only) – 0800 1111

SANE – 0845 767 8000


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