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Last Updated: Sunday, 24 February 2008, 12:01 GMT
Samaritans offer street support
Posters have been put up around Bridgend offering help contacts
The Samaritans went onto the streets of Bridgend on Saturday night to offer support following a number of apparent suicides in young people from the area.

Members of the emotional support charity said it was to remind people in the area of their service.

It followed calls by a senior psychiatrist for parents to talk to their children about the issue.

Seventeen young people have apparently killed themselves in the area since January 2007.

Darren Matthews, the branch director of the charity in Bridgend, said the charity had planned to launch the scheme in April, but had brought it forward following the recent deaths of young people in the area.

"We showed the people of Bridgend we are there, and there to help, and part of the community," he said.

"We were there as a presence if people wanted to talk to us."

Posters have been put up around Bridgend county advertising the service offered by the charity, but Mr Matthews said he hoped face-to-face contact would help.

"If we actually go out onto the streets there's a better chance going to be able to get to the wider community," he added.

He said people in the area were angry at the level of recent media coverage about the issue.

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