Strengthening Understanding Through Education
One way we Talk Away the Dark is by spreading awareness and understanding through education. AFSP’s evidence-informed prevention education programs, delivered by our local chapters throughout the country, take a public health approach to suicide prevention, employing strategies that inform and empower individuals, families and communities to take proactive steps to prevent suicide.
Building on what we’ve learned from research, AFSP’s education programs provide a clear understanding of what leads someone to consider suicide, and show participants how to spot common warning signs, talk safely and compassionately to those they care about, connect people to help and resources, and support at-risk individuals following an attempt.
Talk Saves Lives™
AFSP’s signature education program, Talk Saves Lives: An Introduction to Suicide Prevention, provides participants with a clear understanding of this leading cause of death, including the most up-to-date research and data on suicide prevention. By gaining an understanding of the health, historical, and environmental factors that put individuals at risk, as well as guidance on behaviors to look for and how to get help for someone in a suicidal crisis, participants gain life-saving knowledge and confidence critical to preventing suicide.
Providing a Safety Net for Youth
Suicide and suicidal behavior among youth and young adults constitute a major public health crisis. We can make a difference by increasing understanding of how everyone can play a role in keeping young people safe.
AFSP’s education programs geared toward youth, such as More Than Sad and It’s Real, equip students, parents, teachers and school staff with the knowledge and confidence to identify and address youth who are struggling, and engage in protective and preventative strategies that promote suicide prevention.
Additionally, the Model School District Policy on Suicide Prevention provides educators and school administrators a thorough blueprint for implementing suicide prevention policies in their community.
Diverse Audiences and Special Populations
When it comes to suicide prevention — as suggested by the name of our flagship education program — talk truly can help to save lives. But different audiences and populations face different challenges and require unique, specialized approaches.
From programs such as Finding Hope and Introduction to Supporting Those At Risk, which provide education to those supporting at-risk individuals, and presentations geared toward diverse communities such as Soul Shop for Black Churches and Stronger Communities: LGBTQ Suicide Prevention, AFSP’s education programming goes beyond a general audience to reach individuals of different backgrounds, and those who care for them.
Talk Saves Lives reaches a wide range of audiences, with specialized modules created for segments of the population including older adults, workplace settings, firearms owners and retailers, corrections workers, Hispanic and Latinx communities, and LGBTQ+ people.
By reaching these diverse communities, AFSP is providing education and understanding to more people than ever before, validating their experiences and spreading hope in a way that speaks to them.