We are a charity devoted to stopping teenagers and young people from taking their own lives

Get Involved

From donating to volunteering, advocating, participating or fundraising; there is something for everyone that means you can get involved with supporting OLLIE. As a charity, OLLIE relies on support from people like you to enable us to continue our work.

Supporting OLLIE means different things for different people and we’re confident there’s something out there whether you’re 5 or 105. If you’re in need of inspiration check out our Fundraising Ideas.

Training

The most obvious place to start is the training OLLIE delivers. If you are 15 or older you can attend a suicideTALK or safeTALK. If you’re 16 or older you can attend ASIST. safeTALK and ASIST are designed for people who have no previous training or experience, so you don’t need to be a professional, simply someone who wants to make a difference in your community. You can read more about our training here.

Students

School / House Charity: If you’re a student and want to get involved, you could nominate OLLIE as your whole school/house charity. Whenever a school raises money for OLLIE we want to reinvest that back into the community that raised it in the first place. What that means is when a school has OLLIE as its charity, we will offer our training at no cost or at a discounted rate depending on the amount of money raised.

OLLIE’s Advocate Army: For 6th formers and post-16 students why don’t you start your own OLLIE’s Army to fight against stigma in your school, college or uni? This can be made up of students who have attended safeTALK and ASIST and wear OLLIE’s lapel pins to signify to other students that that can come and talk to them.

Parents

Attend: We know that talking to your child about their mood, wellbeing or mental health isn’t always the easiest conversation, and neither is talking about suicide. For many parents it’s a terrifying prospect and often a subject that is avoided. However, research shows that asking directly about suicide can actually reduce the risk of a young person ending their life. safeTALK can help you develop the confidence to have that difficult conversation and if you are ever in a position where your child is considering suicide, ASIST can teach you how to create a safe-plan and to intervene until professional advice is available.

Advocate: Parents have the hardest job in the world and so often while you’re just getting through the day you have people telling you how to parent, what you should and shouldn’t do. We know that parents are more inclined to follow advice from other parents who “have the t-shirt”. If you’ve attended our training and understand the value of it, you can help OLLIE by spreading the word and encouraging others to attend. It’s that simple but very effective!

Lobby your child’s school: We’ve created a for you to personalise to allow you to ask your child’s school about their work on suicide prevention. Simply make the letter relevant to you and your family and send it to the Designated Safeguarding Person (DSP) at your child’s school or college.

Education staff

Attend: Every year many children spend a minimum of 714 hours in secondary school. Education staff there are at the centre of children’s development and wellbeing. As each year goes by, more responsibility is being placed on education for young people’s mental health and emotional wellbeing. Too often staff feel under-trained and under-equipped whilst supporting children, especially if that child is suicidal. This is the reason why The OLLIE Foundation was started, to ensure education staff have the skills and confidence they need to positively and effectively respond to children and young adults who are at crisis point.

Lobby your SLT at work: There is so much training around for education staff so we’re sure it can be difficult for your Senior Leadership Team (SLT) to decide what they should invest time in. If you want to attend OLLIE’s training but haven’t had the opportunity to yet, you could take your reasoning as to why you should to your Head and SLT.

Professionals

Attend: Whilst there is the perception that professionals are experts in mental health, even those that are, are often nervous about the topic of suicide. One of the reasons for this, is that due to the stigma surrounding it, explicit training for how to deal with individuals considering suicide is a relatively new thing. Professionals who have attended courses to date include counsellors, doctors and nurses. A large part of the training is about giving people confidence in themselves when working with the topic of suicide, as well as the practical skills and knowledge.

Businesses

Attend: There is a growing movement to make mental health training mandatory by legal requirement for businesses in the UK, making it in line with physical first aid. The “Where’s Your Head At?campaign has proposed that Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) is necessary to the same standards as First Aid Training within businesses. To find out more about our corporate programme please contact us.

Fundraising

Arranging a fundraiser for a charity is scary yet exhilarating! You’re full of motivation to support an important cause and full of ideas of what you want to do, but where do you start? We want to make the experience as fun, positive and straightforward as possible, which is why we’ve created our fundraising packs. To download your digital fundraising pack, follow the link below, or to order a printed copy please email [email protected]. If you would like copies of our fundraiser registration, gift aid, sponsorship or press release form please email us.

Donating

Financially

Firstly, we’d like to say thank you for considering donating to OLLIE financially. Without your support OLLIE wouldn’t be able to deliver the training and work to raise awareness of suicide and suicide prevention.

There are many different ways to donate to OLLIE. We have accounts with all the main donation sites, which we have listed below for you.

You can also set up a regular monthly donation using just your mobile number or your debit card thanks to Donr making it super easy.

Alternatively you can make cheques out to “The OLLIE Foundation” or contact us for our bank details to donate by bank transfer.

Legacy Giving

By leaving a gift in your will to OLLIE, you are continuing to care for future generations. Any gift left, no matter the size, will help create a world where no young person feels like suicide is their only option.

Wills can be complicated, and each legacy gift is unique, so a good place to start is by talking to your financial adviser or contact us to have an informal chat.

How can legacy giving reduce inheritance tax?

Legacy gifts are generally completely free of Inheritance Tax and can, in some cases, even reduce inheritance tax for your loved ones. When you leave 10% or more of your assets to charity, if any inheritance tax is due, it will be reduced to a rate of 36%, rather than the standard 40%.

Giving in memory

There are many charities and services that exist to support you through bereavement. Grief is a long journey and is different for everyone but there is support out there.

When someone you love passes away, in memory of them, you may want to donate to a charity that they cared about, or a charity that works in an area related to their death. There are different ways you can do this, for example: fundraising challenges or events, memorial donations pages (JustGiving, Givey, etc) and funeral collections (asking friends and family to donate in lieu of flowers).

We are here to support you in whichever way you choose to raise money in memory of a loved one.

Why we decided to give in memory

Charlie and Catherine lost their son Oliver in 2017 and decided to support OLLIE.

“Losing our wonderful son Oliver in December 2017 was just tragic, incomprehensible and heart breaking. The OLLIE Foundation was very supportive, and we were also very touched by friends showing their support with raising money for the charity. It was uplifting for us to take part in organising a family bike ride in memory of our son. We just hope other young adults will be helped and their families spared the grief which we have experienced.”

Expertise

In the wise words of Susie McDonald, chief executive of the charity Tender: “The charity world creates a bit of a conundrum. Charities are expected to be as efficient and effective as private businesses and yet fundraising for key staff is often dismissed publicly as wasting money.”

So, if you do have certain business skills and you would like to support a worthwhile cause like OLLIE, why not have a think how your skill-set and experience could benefit OLLIE? It could be the best donation you ever make!

Business people: As a charity, whilst we were set up for a social purpose to help those in need, we still have to be run as a business. Whether it be marketing, finances, insurance or legal advice we always greatly appreciate it when people take time out of their own busy lives to provide us with their expertise free of charge. Quite simply, we wouldn’t be here without this support.

Not-for-profit consultants: Being a charity also results in other not-for-profit areas needing to be understood and optimised. Volunteer management and fundraising are pivotal aspects of being a charity so if you have experience within these sectors and would like to help OLLIE become even more efficient and supportive then please get in touch by sending a completed Volunteers Form to [email protected]

Young people: At the heart of OLLIE are children and young people. We are grateful that so many of you want to get involved with supporting us. Whether it’s your knowledge of social media, your access to other young people for focus groups or your perception of OLLIE’s work, we are really keen to hear from you so we can keep OLLIE fresh and current.

Connections: Do you work within education, lead a sports group or are you responsible for young people? Or do you have connections with people that do and where an introduction could help OLLIE further our reach? With our busy lives, when a stranger comes knocking with a proposal we often say “no”, simply because we do not have the time to spare to look into what this unknown person is offering. But when we get a recommendation, we are far more likely to investigate. You could help OLLIE develop new relationships just by making that introduction and recommendation.

Pro Bono Services

The supply of pro bono services to charities is not a new area. Typically revolving around free legal advice, the pro bono world now also encompasses accountancy, marketing, IT and public relations. The benefits of companies and individuals providing pro bono work may be part of a more general corporate social responsibility strategy or a way of recruiting and retaining staff who expect to put something back into the community. It can also be an integral part of a company's professional development plans for employees. Whatever the reasons behind the donation, OLLIE is also grateful for any offer of Pro Bono Services and will work with companies and individuals to ensure both parties get the most from the relationship.

Amazon Smile & PayPal Giving

Amazon Smile: Thanks to technology, there are other ways you can give that fit in amongst your daily spending habits. Amazon donates 0.5% of the net purchase price (excluding VAT, returns and shipping fees) of eligible purchases to the charitable organisation of your choice. To get started simple log in with your normal Amazon account details here. Then just search for The OLLIE Foundation, press select and you’re all set!

PayPal Giving: If you are an avid eBay seller or are just wanting to de-clutter your home and be thrifty at the same time, you can now do so whilst also supporting OLLIE. With OLLIE enrolled with PayPal Giving Fund we appear on PayPal, eBay and Humble Bumble. When you buy, sell or transact you can choose to donate to us.

Volunteering

Why do people volunteer?

People choose to volunteer for a variety of reasons. For some it offers the chance to give something back to the community or make a difference to the people around them. For others it provides an opportunity to develop new skills or build on existing experience and knowledge. Some people enjoy the meaning it brings them as well as the new friends.  What unites them all is that they find it interesting and rewarding.

The National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO) has created a campaign that shares five inspirational stories from ordinary people doing extraordinary things. Check it out here.

Research has shown that volunteering improves:

  • self-rated health
  • mental health
  • life satisfaction
  • social interaction
  • healthy behaviours
  • coping ability.

There is also evidence that volunteers can make a BIG difference to the health and well-being of service users, including increased self-esteem, illness management and acceptance, parenting skills and improved mental health.

Regardless of your reasons for volunteering, we want to ensure that you and OLLE get the most out of the experience. We’d be delighted to hear from you so please do get in touch!

Working Committee

OLLIE works hard to ensure donations received are used effectively and towards reducing youth suicide.  We are very mindful of how we use the public’s donations and do everything we can to keep our core running costs as low as possible.  To that end, we’ve created a volunteer working committee to manage some of the day-to-day tasks as well as special projects for the charity. Committee members will themselves be supported by a committee made up of people who perhaps have less time to offer but the skills and or enthusiasm for that particular work.

The working committee is overseen by our Operations Manager and our CEO and is currently comprised of four teams; Fundraising and Events, Training, Volunteers and Marketing.

If you are interested to volunteer with OLLIE, please contact us and ask for the role description for the area that appeals to you. You can then complete our volunteers form so we can get to know you and get you enrolled as a volunteer.

 Informal Volunteering

We know lots of people would love to volunteer but just don’t have the time. So, we have created a structure for ad-hoc volunteering.  If you register as a Charity Champion we will let you know about one off events where we need an extra pair of hands for an hour or so, or those one off admin tasks that sometimes come up.

For instance, lots of amazing people organise fundraisers on our behalf and where ever possible we go along and support, this is very important to us. Charity Champions can play a large part in helping ensure we are able to provide that support. You can do this on the day helping out at an event or perhaps before or after with some of the associated admin tasks.  It can be a one-off donation of your time or you join our bank of volunteers that we call on when needed.

We will run informal group training sessions for our volunteers so you can feel confident and knowledgeable when talking about OLLIE’s work, our aims and our key messages. These sessions will be run face to face in groups and on line.

If you would like to become one of our Charity Champions, please complete our Volunteering Form and send it to [email protected].

Awareness Through the Arts

Ollie – the film

In 2018, a group of young creatives got together and decided to raise awareness of suicide amongst young people. They did this in the way they knew and loved best – the creative arts.

OLLIE launched our first suicide awareness film campaign in collaboration with the #ItMatters initiative. The creative team of ItMatters produced the film. ItMatters is a national movement of young people using the creative media to raise awareness about mental health and other related issues.

You can watch the Ollie film here.

Within two weeks of its release it had achieved over 50,000 views and reached over 142,000 people on Facebook and almost 3,000 views on YouTube. It's been shared by multiple high-profile celebrities including Stephen Fry!

Archuna Ananthamohan, writer and co-producer, said: “While volunteering for OLLIE, I felt that young people needed to harness the power of social media and film to persuade more people to take action. I made use of the National Youth Theatre members’ network to meet and work with fellow members to turn this goal into a reality”.


Suicide awareness sculpture – Nude Tin Can

In December 2018, St Albans art gallery, Nude Tin Can, collaborated with a local artist and OLLIE to create an original piece of art with the aim of raising awareness of suicide.

Sculpture creator LouZyArt explained that the idea behind her piece was that people on the outside of an individual’s struggles are unable to get in, exemplified by the figures on the outside of the perspex box. The inner box is filled with spheres containing memories, thoughts and objects stuck in a tank full of ‘binding gloop’. Some spheres sink, and others slowly rise to the surface. The visual struggle can relate to all sides – the sadness, despair, tragedy, loss and helplessness. The piece allows viewers time to contemplate their thoughts and relate to a young person who may be stuck so much on the inside that they cannot reach out to the outside nor let anyone else in to help.

Do you have an idea of something you can do using your passions to raise awareness and drive change? If so, we’d love to hear from you and support you with your project. Remember, there are no extraordinary people, only ordinary people who do extraordinary things!

I couldn’t imagine a more deserving enterprise than OLLIE.
Andrew Nicholls, Clinical Psychologist