Albany State University

The “We Are One Albany State University (ASU)” project seeks to develop a multi-disciplinary team of students, faculty, staff, administrators and community partners to develop the infrastructure for suicide and substance use prevention and increase the system capacity to enhance and sustain effective prevention programs and services which support SAMSHA’s Strategic Initiative of increasing awareness and understanding mental and substance use disorders. ASU is a Historically Black Institution (HBCU) located in rural Southwest Georgia. In December 2016, the University System of Georgia granted approval for the creation of the new ASU from the consolidation of Albany State University an HBCU and Darton State College (DSC) an institution with an access mission, effective January, 2017. The Fall 2017 enrollment for ASU was 6615 of which 71.1% were females, 70% were African Americans, 2.4% were Hispanics, 22% were Caucasians, 0.9% Asian, 0.1% Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander, 1.4% were multiracial; 0.3% were American Indian/Alaska Native and 2.9% did not report their race/ethnicity. A majority of students are first-generation learners, 54% lived on campus and 97% received some form of financial aid. The average age for undergraduates is 23.8. (BOR, 2017). About 5% of the student population is active duty military personnel, veterans or families of veterans. The goals of the project are: (1) create comprehensive infrastructure and collaborative networking; (2) increase knowledge of prevention of suicides, mental and substance use disorders; (3) promote help-seeking behaviors and reduce stigma and negative public attitudes towards mental health; and (4) create a campus community “We Are One ASU,” where the ommunity is engaged in assuring that each student experiencing mental distress is identified, screened and referred. The project will serve participants by offering training, programs and activities related to mental and substance use disorders and offer information on campus and community mental health resources. The project will provide direct training for at least 500 students and 50 key stakeholders each year and provide other programs, activities and services to at least 1000 students and other stakeholders each year for a total of at least 4650 participants over the life of the grant. The project activities will include: (1) create a Suicide Prevention Coalition of ASU and community partners; (2) offer activities, trainings and programs to prevent substance abuse disorders; (3) offer culturally appropriate training program (Kognito and QPR) to reduce stigma associated with seeking care; (4) reevaluate the present crisis response plan to accommodate the needs of the new ASU; and (5) distribute culturally appropriate informational materials that address warning signs of suicide, describe risk and protective factors, and identify appropriate actions to take when a student is in distress. The project will ensure that the needs of students at high-risk including, but not limited to LGBT, military family members and veterans are met.

Virginia Department of Health

The Virginia Department of Health’s (VDH) proposal, Virginia Youth Suicide Prevention Program (VYSPP), expands the suicide prevention infrastructure developed in Virginia under the previous six years of Garrett Lee Smith Act (GLS) funding. These funds will enable VDH to continue to provide consultation, evidence-based resources and gatekeeper training to youth servicing providers, and these funds will allow VDH to engage new audiences in our suicide prevention approach, including military/veterans and their families, mental health/substance abuse professionals, and primary care providers. The Campus Suicide Prevention Center of Virginia will also continue to provide valuable consultation, resources, and training to all 43 public and 115 private Virginia colleges.

The specific goals of the project are to: (1) provide state leadership to secure broad-based support for suicide prevention in Virginia (2) raise statewide awareness about risk factors for suicide and encourage help seeking among providers serving youth, military/veterans and their families; (3) improve comprehensive community-based prevention/early intervention programming in specific target areas in Virginia; (4) improve campus based suicide prevention and intervention at Virginia institutions of higher education; (5) improve youth suicide surveillance, needs assessment and program evaluation.

The proposed project includes state, community, and campus based approaches to preventing suicide in Virginia. At the state level, VDH will coordinate targeted gatekeeper training to youth serving providers (foster care, juvenile justice, mental health professionals, substance abuse, and primary care providers) and military/veterans and their families, promote public and provider awareness, and promote comprehensive community, school, and campus approaches to suicide prevention. Two sub grantees, the Crisis Center Bristol and Crisis Line of Central Virginia, will work in their local communities to build and maintain local coalitions, coordinate local awareness campaigns, educate and train school staff on suicide prevention/intervention, and train and provide resources to youth serving community organizations. A third sub grantee affiliated with James Madison University will direct the Campus Suicide Prevention Center of Virginia, working with colleges and universities across the state to build the infrastructure necessary to promote mental health for all students, identify and support those with mental health concerns and effectively respond to individuals who are at risk for suicide. The program will serve 525,000 Virginians in the first year of funding and 2 million throughout the lifetime of the project.

University of Wyoming

The Enhanced University of Wyoming (UW) Lifesavers Initiative aims to prevent suicide and suicide attempts via a comprehensive, collaborative, and coordinated approach that consists of education, training, outreach, and support. Key components include: (1) a campus-community coalition and networking/infrastructure-building with Wyoming community colleges; (2) educational strategies targeting the entire UW population, particularly military reservists and veterans, and students and faculty in health sciences; and (3) gatekeeper trainings.

The target populations for the Enhanced UW Lifesavers Initiative are gatekeepers. Specifically, efforts will be focused on training gatekeepers in the following areas: UW student population and particularly military reservists and veterans, students in pre-professional and professional health science majors (i.e. pre-med, nursing, pharmacy, medical), UW staff and health sciences faculty, and gatekeepers at Wyoming community colleges.

Specific program strategies include: (1) development of a chapter of Active Minds, a student-led peer education and support program; (2) educational seminars and informational materials for students, staff, faculty, and families; (3) a social marketing campaign; (4) gatekeeper trainings; (5) a campus-community coalition; and (6) a conference for Wyoming community colleges.

University of Oregon

The Oregon University Suicide Prevention Project (OUSPP) represents a committed effort by a consortium of all eight public universities in Oregon to enhance services for students with mental and behavioral health problems, thereby reducing the incidence of suicide among the 81,242 students in the consortium’s student population. The universities comprising this consortium have great need for suicide prevention programming. The OUSPP will increase awareness of suicide as a public health problem that is often preventable; increase the ability of faculty and staff to recognize and respond effectively to students at-risk of suicide; increase students’ awareness of crisis line services and treatment resources; and provide training on effective clinical and professional practices in the area of suicide prevention. Other key activities in the Project include dissemination of educational materials to students, students’ family members, faculty, and staff; provision of suicide risk assessment and intervention skills training for identified campus gatekeepers; implementation of triage forms in campus health centers that allow students at-risk to be identified and referred for treatment; and expansion of suicide prevention task forces on consortium campuses. The OUSPP will succeed in reaching its goals because of its significant human and financial resources. Counseling center directors have committed service hours from a total of 22 staff to the Project. These are staff that are already intimately familiar with student needs and campus resources.

University of Montana/Fort Peck

Sister Nations Empowerment Partnership
The Fort Peck Tribal Health Department and the Institute for Educational Research and Service have entered a partnership ? the Sister Nations Empowerment Partnership ? to design and deploy a comprehensive system of youth suicide prevention on the Fort Peck Reservation in Northeast Montana. The partnership will build on existing work in response to a devastating suicide cluster in 2010. Particular attention will be given to needs identified in a deployment report by the U.S. Public Health Service in response to a state of emergency declared by the Fort Peck Tribes in May 2010. During the period identified in the report, the suicide completion rate on the reservation was three times the Montana average and more than six times the rate for the nation as a whole.
Our goals are:

  • Increase the number of primary health care and mental health providers trained to assess, manage, and treat youth at risk for suicide.
  • Increase the number of youth, school staff, parents, and community members trained to identify and refer for care a youth at risk for suicide.
  • Increase the number of youth receiving mental health and substance abuse services by improving access to care.
  • Promote the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline in all activities.

Our work will be driven by the Public Health Service Deployment?s Fall 2010 report about the cluster, results of youth surveys and focus groups conducted during the past year, best practices outlined by SAMHSA, and priorities outlined by the recently established Fort Peck Suicide Prevention Coalition.
Interventions include:

  • The World Health Organizations? Brief Intervention & Contact for Suicide Attempters
  • Alcohol Screening & Brief Intervention
  • Steps to Respect bullying prevention program
  • SafeTalk gatekeeper training
  • Sources of Strength youth mentoring and suicide prevention program
  • Brief Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
  • Promotion of National Suicide Prevention Lifeline

Overall, 1,980 youth will receive grant services (75% of youth under age 25), 660 in each of three years. The partnership is seeking $480,000 a year for three years.

University of Arizona

The University of Arizona (UA) Campus Health Service (CHS), in collaboration with a wide variety of campus and community partners, proposes a comprehensive suicide prevention strategy to reduce suicidal ideation, attempts, completions and related risk factors such as substance use and depression among UA students with a special emphasis on high-risk student populations (LGBTQ students, veterans, military family members, Native Americans). To reach this goal, the following objectives will be addressed: (1) Increase (10%) knowledge, comfort level and willingness to respond effectively to students with mental and/or behavioral health problems; (2) increase (5%) awareness and utilization of campus and community resources that can identify, assess and treat mental and behavioral health problems; (3) increase (5%) help seeking for mental and behavioral health problems; (4) decrease (5%) risk factors such as depression and substance abuse; (5) decrease (5%) suicide attempts and (6) institutionalize effective program components and disseminate information at the local, state and national levels.

Located in Tucson, UA is a large public institution (over 38,000 students) about 70 miles from the US/Mexico border. Over 35% of the student population is from an ethnic/racial minority with 3% being Native American. Significant problems of alcohol and other drug (AOD) use and mental health issues among students have been documented on annual campus surveys since 1995. On the 2010 survey (n=2931), 40% had engaged in heavy episodic drinking in the past two weeks, 34% had used marijuana in the past year, 12% had used pain pills and 9% had used sedatives not prescribed to them. While 11% had been diagnosed with depression and 11% with anxiety, 25% indicated that anxiety or depression had made it somewhat or very difficult to work, study, go to class or get along with people. Data from UA Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) triage forms for 2010 indicates that 63% of students seeking services said they were depressed, 31% felt isolated/withdrawn and 70% said they had anxiety. These risk factors indicate the strong need for comprehensive suicide prevention on campus.

To address the objectives, the team will utilize gatekeeper training to 550 individuals/year, educational presentations and curriculum infusion to a minimum of 400 individuals/year and campus-wide efforts such as student driven activities and media (videos, posters, pamphlets, articles) with the potential to be seen by most students (38,000), as well as local, state and national dissemination (presentations, technical assistance and publications).

To evaluate these efforts, data will be collected on: (1) increases in knowledge, willingness and comfort to intervene among training participants (pre/immediate/3-month post); (2) increased utilization of resources (CAPS triage); (3) increased help seeking (annual campus-wide student survey, presentation pre/immediate posttests); (4) decreased risk factors and suicide attempts among the general student population (annual campus-wide student survey, campus suicide data) and (5) increased collaboration/dissemination at the local, state and national levels.

Tanana Chiefs Conference

The Tanana Chiefs Conference Wellness Project will serve Alaska Native youth living in the Alaska Interior region. The purpose of the proposed project is to build and implement a youth suicide intervention system and to expand TCC suicide intervention activities. We will provide community outreach, implement highly successful Wellness Teams in 14 new communities, we will engage youth through the American Indian Life Skills Curriculum and Sources of Strength, and we will provide 24-hour availability of crisis intervention, clinical screening and assessment, immediate response and brief intervention, as well as follow-up services to youth at risk of suicide.

Our goal for this project is to reduce the youth suicide rate in the TCC region by increasing 1) the number of youth who are referred for behavioral health care services; 2) the number of youth at risk for suicide who receive behavioral health services; and 3) the number of youth at risk for suicide who have positive outcomes as a result of behavioral health services. To reach these goals, TCC will:

  1. Engage the targeted communities in suicide intervention, by providing community outreach and messaging to increase individuals awareness of suicide and their knowledge of crisis intervention services; and expanding our highly successful Wellness Team model to communities in our region that have not developed one. We will develop 14 new Wellness Teams and strengthen our 16 existing teams; reach 3,641 individuals with outreach messages and train 375 community members.
  2. Engage youth-serving organizations by providing various levels of suicide intervention training, including SafeTALK, QPR, and/or Mental Health First Aide. To behavioral health care and health care personnel we will provide ASIST as well as Postvention training. We will provide training to behavioral health and other social service providers a year.
  3. Engage youth in suicide intervention activities that 1) help them develop resiliency and lessen feeling of hopelessness and 2) provide them with suicide awareness and the skills they need to intervene and refer their suicidal peers. We will use two methods to engage youth:direct training to youth using the American India n Life Skills Curriculum as leaders, engaging them in the Sources of Strength program. We will reach 200 students and 16 schools.
  4. Build and implement a suicide intervention system to address the unique needs of youth. We will integrate this system into TCCs overall Adult Behavioral Health system, and provide 24-hour availability of crisis intervention, clinical screening and assessment, immediate response and brief intervention, as well as follow-up services, reaching 25 youth a year.

Stony Brook University

Stony Brook University seeks to develop a more comprehensive and inclusive approach to preventing suicide by creating a network of knowledgeable and effective gatekeepers across the campus and effectively reaching Asian American students with critical information about suicide, stress management, and ways to access campus resources. This project directly engages key faculty and staff stakeholders in suicide prevention through implementation of an established gatekeeper training program (QPR). In addition, this project reaches out to a largely overlooked, high-risk population by collaborating with Asian American faculty and staff mentors to provide educational seminars. These seminars contextualize suicide and depression using language and concepts which are more consistent with the beliefs and values of Asian American students.

Southcentral Foundation

Southcentral Foundation (SCF), a tribal health care organization serving Alaska Native and American Indian people in Southcentral Alaska, proposes a Tribal Youth Suicide Prevention initiative. The initiative will focus on improving screening and referrals of at-risk youth ages 10 to 24, the provision of subsequent case management and other services, training, and engaging teens in the development of awareness campaigns.

Just in the last 12 months, the SCF Behavioral Urgent Response Team was called to conduct consultations with 567 customers due to a suicide attempt or suicide ideation. Of these, over 35 percent were Alaska Native youth ages 10 to 24. Presently 11,073 Alaska Native youth (ages 10 to 24) are on the panel of a SCF primary care physician. Of the total number empanelled, 9,327 were seen by their primary care teams in the last 12 months. This is the population SCF will focus on each year, for a three-year project period.

The project goals are, in summary, to 1) Wwork in partnership with other organizations in a coordinated, strategic manner; 2) increase protective factors in the lives of Anchorage Native youth; 3) identify and assess Anchorage Native youth in crisis or with multiple risk factors, and provide them with access to culturally appropriate services; 4) provide timely access to an array of treatment and supportive services to identified high-risk Anchorage Native youth.

The objectives include: youth-serving organization contributions to implementation of SCF Suicide Prevention Plan in Year 1; annual cultural context orientations for community partner staff; increased competencies in suicide detection and response among community partners; widespread dissemination of awareness campaign materials; youth engagement in production of Public Service Announcements; increased protection of participating youth from risk of suicide; five MOAs signed annually to establish processes for referral and assessment of Native youth at elevated risk for suicide; increased readiness of ANI AI youth-serving organizations to refer and assess youth; increased depression/suicide screening of youth 12 to 24; training of “gatekeepers” resulting in increased suicide crisis management knowledge and skill; annually, referral, treatment and case management services for youth screened/assessed positive for risk; and lastly, those ages 10 to 24 seen by BURT for depression and/or suicide risk, symptoms decrease after subsequent referral and treatment.

Rosebud Sioux Tribe

The Rosebud Sioux Tribe Wiconi Wakan Health and Healing Center will continue to impliment the Tribal Youth Suicide Prevention and early Intervention Project, targeting Rosebud Sioux Tribal youth between the ages of 10-24 years old who reside within the boundaries of the Rosebud Sioux Reservation. For the past two years, the Wiconi Wakan Health and Healing Center has been the venue for providing successful culturally relevant and appropriate y outh suicide prevention and early intervention strategies with the intent of reviving the life of our people. The Wiconi Wakan Health and Healing Centers overall goal is to increase the number of risk youth who are receiving referrals and treatment from behavioral health services. The goals of the program include:

  • Program staff will implement the public health approach to suicide prevention as outlined in the Institute of medicine report, Reducing Suicide: A National Imperative. This approach focuses on identifying broader patterns of suicide and suicidal behavior, which will be used in analyzing data collected and monitoring the effectiveness of services provided.
  • The WWHHC will provide outreach and prevention strategies to increase participation in, and access to, treatment and prevention services for Native American youth.
  • WWHHD will provide direct outpatient treatment (including screening, assessment and care management) or prevention services to Rosebud Sioux Tribal Youth at risk in an effort to increase the number of youth identified as at risk for suicidal behavior who are referred for and received behavioral health care services.

The Wiconi Wakan Health and Healing Center has been a pillar in tribal communities across the reservation in promoting suicide awareness and education. The WWHHD, if funded, expects to fill gaps in the current delivery system by hiring a clinical Licenses Psychologist to screen, assess, and provide case management and referrals to tribal youth in need of such services.