American Indian Health and Family Services

American Indian Health and Family Services of Southeast MI
Garrett Lee Smith Tribal

The American Indian Health and Family Services of Southeast Michigan’s Manidookewigashkibjigan Sacred Bundle: R.E.S.P.E.C.T. Project, a State/Tribal Youth Suicide Prevention Cooperative Agreement, serves primarily American Indian/Alaska Native (AI/AN) youth and young adults ages 10-24 in Detroit and Southeastern Michigan, with a goal to partner with tribal communities throughout the state. In collaboration with State and County Suicide Prevention authorities and crisis centers, the R.E.S.P.E.C.T. project has utilized evidence-based practice (EBP) interventions and treatment strategies as well as culturally-infused Practice-Based Evidence to expand the safety net of suicide prevention and intervention for urban AI/ANs, who are at higher risk of suicide attempts and deaths than other racial/ethnic groups in the United States. The goals of the R.E.S.P.E.C.T. (Respecting, Engaging, Supporting, Protecting, Empowering, Connecting and Teaching) Project are to:

  • Increase the number of persons in schools, foster care systems, juvenile justice programs, and tribal sites trained to identify and appropriately refer youth at risk for suicide.
  • Increase the number of clinical service providers trained to assess, manage, and treat youth at risk for suicide.
  • Improve continuity of care and follow-up of youth identified at risk for suicide who are discharged from emergency departments and inpatient psychiatric units.
  • Increase identification of risk, referral to and utilization of behavioral health care services.
  • Increase the promotion and utilization of the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.
  • Comprehensively implement applicable sections of the 2012 National Strategy for Suicide Prevention to reduce rates of suicide ideation, attempts, and deaths in our communities.

Four measurable outcomes include: 1) Increased Outreach for suicide awareness (1400 annually, 7000 total), 2) Expanded Training and technical assistance to improve ability of local and tribal community members and professionals to identify, manage and treat youth at risk (100 annually, 500 total); 3) Continued Screening to increase identification of at-risk youth (100 annually, 500 total), and 4) Improved and expanded Treatment measured by an increase of at-risk youth receiving culturally appropriate behavioral health care (50 annually, 250 over 5 years).

To successfully meet these goals and outcomes we plan to: 1) Expand training of mental health professionals, gatekeepers, and community members, 2) Extend Outreach to develop collaborative relationships with community members (urban and tribal), educational institutions, and youth serving organizations and 3) Create a sustainability plan for the AIHFS and tribal communities to ensure the ongoing mental health and well-being of our youth.