Australian Suicide Prevention Foundation

A National Health Promotion Charity


World Suicide Prevention Day is on September 10th, 2023

Media Release
5 September 2023

“Prevent A Suicide: What To Say” mobile app – Hold On to Life
Australian Suicide Prevention Foundation

Link to App Store: “Prevent A Suicide: What to Say


Link to Google Play: “Prevent A Suicide: What to Say


The Australian Suicide Prevention Foundation today has released a free App “Prevent A Suicide: What to Say“, a bank of medically approved text messages which family and friends can download with one click and send to a suicidal person as texts or WhatsApp messages.

This overcomes the problem of most people being afraid to say the wrong thing, when suicide is mentioned. This text safety net mobilising family and friends is an Australian world first initiative.

The “Prevent A Suicide: What to Say” App is also being released to every Federal and State Member of Parliament through their Electorate offices leading up to World Suicide Prevention Day on Sunday 10th September.

The App is based on the website and is very easy to use.

Clinical Associate Professor David Horgan, the founder of the Australian Suicide Prevention Foundation, said the “Prevent A Suicide: What to Say” programme is aimed at giving the community a safety net to immediately wrap around anyone close to them who mentions suicide, so that the person’s safety can become a shared effort involving both the community and professionals.

“Empowering family and friends to become actively involved by sending frequent, meaningful, and specifically directed texts can prevent suicidal thoughts from becoming suicide attempts.”

Professor Horgan said, each suicide on average will directly affect more than 130 friends and family members. 

“Those most at risk of any suicidal experiences include those aged 16 to 34, especially females, and indigenous Australians.

Professor Horgan said is a world-first free community asset which is easily accessed and can be used at any time to help family and friends faced with the risk of self-harm or suicide in someone close to them.

“All our messages are medically approved and peer supported texts that you can send, and edit if you wish, to suit your situation. Prevent A Suicide – What to Say App is user-friendly, simple and intuitive to use. The App is privacy focused and does not collect or store any personal information and there is no sign-up process. Just download the App for free and you’re ready to use it. The App is also ideal for repeated use as suicidal ideas typically last days to weeks.”

The In Tough Times Text website and the “Prevent A Suicide: What to Say” App are available 24/7. No training is required. There are no signups.

Migrant communities: Google Translate makes the website multilingual; the App is being upgraded to incorporate this feature.

Professor Horgan said “Prevent A Suicide – What to Say” is more than just an App. It is a way to show someone that you care, that you understand, and that you are there for them. It is a way to prevent a suicide by sending a message, saving a life! It is much harder to proceed to attempt suicide when the most significant people in one’s life are sending supportive, emotive and helpful texts”.

  • This is a 24/7 free-to-use and medically approved service that can save lives.

Clinical Associate Professor David Horgan, MB, BCH, BAO, DPM, MRCPSYCH, MPHIL, FRANZCP, FRCPEDIN, MD Founder, Australian Suicide Prevention Foundation, is available for interview.

Media Enquiries:
Contact Ron Smith OAM, Australian Suicide Prevention Foundation
Mobile: 0417 329 201 

to arrange an interview with Clinical Associate Professor David Horgan, the founder of the Australian Suicide Prevention Foundation

Suicide Statistics In Australia
“Suicide and attempted suicide are the commonest causes of death and injury between the ages of 15 and 49, male or female, in Australia.” (ABS)

“Over 3 million Australians have had serious thoughts of suicide and over one million have attempted suicide in their lifetime.” (ABS)

“Most people are afraid of saying the wrong thing or don’t know what to say to a person mentioning suicide.” (Resolve Strategic 2022)

About the Australian Suicide Prevention Foundation
The Australian Suicide Prevention Foundation provides Australia-wide suicide prevention and intervention 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. We have been funded solely by donations from the public since our foundation in 1997. We base our intervention programmes on innovative approaches using internet technology.

We provide immediate answers and recommendations to the user suffering severe emotional pain, the main factor in suicide, and to their family and friends, irrespective of the time and location, when people need some basic assistance, information and links to other well known approved organisations.

Acknowledgement to Country
ASPF acknowledges Traditional Owners of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island cultures; and to Elders past and present.

*Important Disclaimer: Our texts are approved by those who themselves had suicidal thoughts, and by medical and other mental health professionals. This site is medical information only, and is not to be taken as diagnosis, advice or treatment, which can only be decided by your own doctor or mental health professional.


Australian Suicide
Prevention Foundation

For over 20 years we’ve provided Australia-wide suicide prevention to every and any vulnerable Australian, whether they be in metropolitan, rural or isolated areas.


By donating to or otherwise assisting (a programme from you are helping hundreds of thousands of people who have or will have suicidal ideas.

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