Listening Ear Launch New Amparo: Support Following Suicide Service in Thames Valley

Listening Ear are excited to announce the launch of the new Amparo Thames Valley – Support after Suicide service. Amparo, a unique Suicide Postvention service, is part of Listening Ear; a registered charity and growing social enterprise offering services accredited by the British Association for Counselling & Psychotherapy, with its headquarters in Merseyside.

The new Amparo service, funded by Oxford Clinical Commissioning Group, will provide free support to individuals and families across Thames Valley, as well as for professionals supporting the bereaved.

The Amparo footprint covers a population of over 12 million people, or approximately 22% of the population of England, making it the largest provider of support after suicide in the country. Within these areas, there are significant demographic differences, in particular their population make up and the diversity of their communities. Amparo has been successful in both urban and rural areas, providing a service that is individualised for each beneficiary.

The free support offer includes:

  • Contact within 24 hours of a referral
  • One to one support from a named Amparo Liaison Worker
  • Information, practical and emotional support
  • Practical support liaising with Police and other agencies
  • Support at Inquest
  • Help with any media enquiries
  • Help overcoming any feelings of isolation
  • Referrals and signposting to other services as required
  • CYP Counselling
  • Critical Incident Debriefing
  • Zoom awareness sessions for professionals –



Richard Brown CEO of Listening Ear “We are delighted with the recent announcement that Amparo will now be available to people living in Thames Valley. Amparo has grown from its Merseyside base to now support people in Cheshire, Merseyside, South Yorkshire, Kent and Medway, Coventry and Warwickshire, Lancashire, Southampton, Hampshire, Isle of Wight and Portsmouth. Extending our service across Thames Valley means we now cover over 22% of the English population.  Support for those bereaved by suicide is one of the six priorities in the national strategy, “Preventing suicide in England – A cross-government outcomes strategy to save lives, 2012.” Amparo focusses on this support and helps those affected with practical and emotional support”


Further Information

Suicide is an individual tragedy; life-altering for those bereaved, and a traumatic event for the community and local services involved. In England there were 5,224 registered suicides in 2020 which is equivalent to an age-standardised mortality rate of 10.0 deaths per 100,000 people, which is statistically significantly lower than the 2019 rate of 11.0 deaths per 100,000.

The ONS attribute this decrease to be driven by two factors, a decrease in male suicides and delays in registration due to the pandemic.

“The latest available evidence shows that suicide rates did not increase during the early stages of the pandemic, which is contrary to some speculation at the time. Instead, we found suicide rates to be lower between April and July 2020 – the first wave of COVID-19 in England and Wales – when compared with the same period in previous years.

“Our findings are consistent with other studies, which found no increase in suicide in the seven months that followed the first national lockdown in 2020. They are also comparable with research covering other countries – such as the United States, Germany, Japan and Australia – which found that suicide numbers have remained largely unchanged or declined in the early months of the pandemic compared with the expected levels based on the pre-pandemic period.”

People bereaved by suicide are at greater risk of attempting to or taking their own lives by suicide by up to 300%.  It is estimated that a minimum of 10 people will suffer a severe impact as a result of each individual suicide, which would indicate over 52,000 were affected across England and Wales during 2020.  9% of people affected by suicide will attempt to take their own life (Pitman et AL, BMJ 2016).

Since the commencement of the Amparo service in other areas of England no beneficiaries have gone on to take their own life as evidenced by a coroner office audit. Amparo is free of charge and does not have a waiting list.

To refer a person who has been affected by suicide into Amparo,

Call 0300 088 9255


Need Urgent Help?

If you need help or are worried about someone, the following services offer immediate support:


  • SAMARITANS – Call 116123 or visit:
  • PAPYRUS – Call 0800 068 41 41, Text: 07786209697 or Email:
  • CALM – Call 080058 58 58 or visit