Sources of Strength Stops Suicide



connecting youth who may feel socially isolated or in distress with positive peers and with trusted adults can actually reduce their risk of suicidal thinking and a suicidal behavior and it can increase one sense of belonging and personal value and self-worth sources a strength is about like connecting students and staff to their strengths and when they're struggling those strengths can be used for them to lean on so they can focus on the positive and not the negative sources our strength is a pure led program that helps students know their hope help and strengths so that there's always hope that they can always have help out there and that there's strengths that they can always go to the wheel is made of eight strengths that was developed knowing what people turn to when they went through trying or tricky times in life it's evidence-based and it really can make a difference for most students and knowing that they have this to go to we started realize there's just not a lot of dialogue happening around what is strength in the midst of these adversities that we face in life what does that look like we spend about 90% of our time talking about strength talking about protective factors talking about the things that we know help us navigate the ups and downs in life that we all face help us really get through those things in a healthy way and help us help other people just like we know that a disease process can spread through a social network we've learned that so can attitudes and behaviors and beliefs and we've seen this with a lot of negative health outcomes things like obesity smoking behavior binge drinking behavior but we've learned that positive things can spread through network in the same way things like hope and in connection and Trust towards adults and help-seeking behavior and healthy coping these kinds of things can spread through a network so by providing that process and that platform for their voice to be heard for their voice to be leveraged for good we're really able to see that happen on really elation level we're very aware that every school is going to run sources differently than another school because it has to fit with their culture of their building and what works best for them but we really go in and try to give them the tools we could then come in and train them and offer support throughout the year it's as easy as just a phone call to have us come in and get it started kids that wouldn't normally have a voice in a school setting that are kind of those outliers are those kids that are disconnected they all of a sudden are part of the conversation for wellness and being connected they are more empowered to make that change that they realize that they're not alone we have encouraged that in our trainings that you are not alone in this that you should always be reaching out to others for help and so to realize that they're not the only ones going through these things that there are people to get in their circle to help them get through this I think is really powerful for them it's a very uplifting program and all the parts of the wheel means something to me and I know that I can lean back on any of those parts of the wheel when I when I'm struggling instead of having to wait for the tragedy to happen let's be proactive about it it's not about waiting until there's a problem there's acknowledging that when we think about suicide and mental health to be engaged in a wellness model that supports those conversations that's huge a vast majority of people who struggle with feeling suicidal do not go on to die by suicide recovery and resiliency is the true norm but that's often not what we communicate we need to highlight those stories we need to create a counter narrative around hope and around recovery those things are not only possible but they're probable evaluations show that programs like sources of strength can improve norms about suicide and behavior in a randomized control trial conducted with 18 high schools sources of strength was found to improve help-seeking adaptive norms regarding suicide connectedness to adults and school engagement sources of strength is one example of an evidence-based program in CDC's technical package to prevent suicide use CDC's technical packages to prevent violence in your community

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