In Canada, suicide is first health-related cause of death amongst young people aged 15 to 24 in Canada. The need to identify mental health issues and provide preventive support for children and youth has only grown with the onset of the pandemic, which is associated with higher levels of mental health distress amongst young people.
As a consistent gathering place for young people, schools are important sites for early identification of mental health problems and suicidal ideation and behaviour. As spaces for learning, they offer a unique opportunity to build knowledge and skills that can support mental wellness through direct instruction and practice with everyday mental health strategies.
To help, the Ontario Youth Suicide Prevention Life Promotion Collaborative has developed School-based suicide prevention life promotion initiatives: A resource for community-based providers. The resource offers tips and resources on how school boards and community-based child and youth mental health organizations can collaborate to maximize opportunities to support children and youth with suicide prevention and life promotion.
The resource aims to enhance community-based service providers’ understanding of best practices in school-based prevention, outline considerations for collaboration and share additional resources to support decision-making related to school-based suicide prevention work.
Ontario Youth Suicide Prevention Life Promotion Collaborative aims to ensure Ontario’s children and youth and those who support them have access to the latest evidence-informed, practical knowledge to effectively guide and help integrate efforts in youth suicide prevention and life promotion. To download the new resource and find out more about the Collaborative’s work, please visit PreventingYouthSuicide.ca.