During this time, suicide prevention skills are needed more than ever.

We Need to Talk, the youth mental health initiative of the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Detroit, is offering free, online suicide prevention training to members of the Detroit Jewish community 13 years or older.

“Nearly all of us knows someone struggling with depression or a serious mental illness,” says We Need to Talk Coordinator Amy Wayne. “Recently, COVID-19 has caused increased stressors and mental health issues for many, while at the same time has limited resources that people may typically use to cope.”

During this time, suicide prevention skills are needed more than ever. Thanks to the generosity of the Zuckerman Klein Family Foundation, members of the community can access this training and the skills and knowledge to keep family, friends and co-workers safe from suicide.

The training is available through a program called LivingWorks Start. Participants do not need any previous knowledge or experience and once signed up, they have up to a year to complete the online training. Training sessions take between an hour to an hour and a half and can be completed from the comfort of home.

LivingWorks programs have led the field of suicide prevention for more than 35 years. The program was informed by best practices in suicidology, education and e-learning principles. As of December 2019, 535 participants completed LivingWorks Start. Follow-up studies indicated that 75% of participants were comfortable tuning into the possibility of suicide, and about 90% of participants correctly responded with “ask” as the follow-up to tuning in to the possibility of suicide, revealing the skills learned during training were correctly put to use.

“Suicide is the second leading cause of death for young people ages 10 to 24 and is the 10th leading cause of death for all ages,” Wayne said. “Most people are surprised to learn they’re much more likely to encounter someone who’s thinking about suicide than someone who needs CPR. Yet suicide is preventable. With the right skills, anyone can help save a life.”

To learn more and register for LivingWorks Start training, go to wn2t.org/livingworks.

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