SUICIDE PREVENTION & AWARENESS
CMHA Vernon provides services that assist the public to gain awareness on how to recognize when a person may be having thoughts of suicide, what to do and where to get the necessary help for them. This is offered through materials, presentations, workshops and services such as the Crisis Line.
The Suicide Prevention Program’s purpose is to build capacity within the community through education and awareness campaigns. The goal is to reduce the stigma associated with the issue of suicide, risk assessments and interventions.
This program takes a lead role coordinating the Suicide Prevention Committee of Vernon and District, this committee is comprised of a variety of organizations within our community to have a vested interest in making a difference. Their contribution to our annual activities is essential to identifying current community needs. We are grateful for their ongoing involvement.
PREVENTION AND INTERVENTION
Community Gatekeeper training is designed to help make BC communities safer – and help save lives – by preparing key members of every community with skills to help people who are at risk of suicide. Community Gatekeepers are people who have been trained to recognize when someone could be at risk of suicide, talk with them, help keep them safe, and connect them to community supports and resources. They are trusted community members who often hold a position of responsibility in the community such as first responders, HR professionals, community service providers, Elders and spiritual leaders, coaches, teachers and others, and have regular contact with many adults or older adults. Community Gatekeeper training follows curriculum shown to be effective at increasing knowledge, skill and willingness to intervene, as well as helping reduce the risk of suicide. Two levels of training are available:
safeTALK is a basic half-day workshop that prepares participants to identify people with thoughts of suicide and connect them with life-saving first aid resources.
Over the course of their training, safeTALK participants will learn to:
- Notice and respond to situations where suicide thoughts might be present
- Recognize that invitations for help are often overlooked
- Move beyond the common tendency to miss, dismiss, and avoid suicide
- Apply the TALK steps: Tell, Ask, Listen, and KeepSafe
- Know community resources and how to connect someone with thoughts of suicide to them for further help
Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training (ASIST)
ASIST is a two-day workshop that teaches participants to carry out life-saving interventions for people at risk of suicide.
Over the course of their two-day workshop, ASIST participants learn to:
- Understand the ways that personal and societal attitudes affect views on suicide and interventions
- Provide guidance and suicide first aid to a person at risk in ways that meet their individual safety needs
- Identify the key elements of an effective suicide safety plan and the actions required to implement it
- Appreciate the value of improving and integrating suicide prevention resources in the community at large
- Recognize other important aspects of suicide prevention including life-promotion and self-care
Community Gatekeeper training is being offered across BC on a fee-for-service basis. To learn more about bringing Community Gatekeeper training to Vernon and District or your workplace, please contact us at 250-542-3114 or Alyssa.Christmas@cmha.bc.ca
Community Gatekeeper training follows curriculum developed by LivingWorks Education. Funding provided by the BC Ministry of Health
After Suicide Loss Support
Healing After Suicide Grief Support Group
The Healing After Suicide Grief Support Group is for those who have lost a loved one by suicide. Groups meet once per week for 8 weeks to discuss and share feelings and experiences related to:
- impact of loss
- honouring the memory of a loved one
- guilt, anger, regret
- coping as a family
- anniversaries & holidays
- building a support network
For more information on these workshops, call 250-542-3114.