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Suicide Prevention

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Chatham County Safety Net Planning Council is using a public health approach to reduce stigma around mental health and to prevent suicide. Find out how you can get involved. Attend an Applied Suicide Intervention Training (ASIST) workshop today!

What is ASIST?

Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training (ASIST) is the world’s leading suicide intervention workshop. It is listed on the National Registry of Evidence-based Programs and Practices (NREPP), has a strong evidence base, and is shown to make a difference. ASIST is developed by LivingWorks, an international organization dedicated to saving lives from suicide. Chatham County Safety Net Planning Council, Inc. and Gateway Community Service Board are partnering to bring this internationally recognized program to Chatham County.

Why is suicide prevention and intervention important in Chatham County?

Each year over 1,300 Georgians die by suicide. That’s more than double the number of homicides across the state, and nearly as many as deaths from motor vehicle accidents. In Chatham County in 2016, 48 individuals or 16.6 per 100,000 committed suicide, making suicide the fourth leading cause of Years of Potential Life Lost (YPLL) and higher than the Georgia rate of 12.66 deaths per 100,000. From 2012-2016, 200 individuals in Chatham County lost their life to suicide (GA OASIS data). Yet suicide is preventable—many people who consider suicide choose to stay alive, often with support from their families, friends, and health care providers. One of the best ways you can help people in your family and community is to get trained with effective skills.

Who should attend ASIST workshops?

Although ASIST is widely used by healthcare providers, participants don’t need any formal training to attend the workshop—ASIST can be learned and used by anyone. ASIST teaches participants, 16 or older, how to apply suicide first-aid skills in many settings:  with family, friends, co-workers, and teammates, as well as formal caregiving roles. Many organizations have incorporated ASIST into professional development for their employees. First responders, hospital employees, human resources staff, counselors, parole officers, teachers, and any other community member who interacts with suicidal individuals on a monthly basis can benefit from the skills gained through ASIST workshop.

Who provides ASIST workshops?

The Chatham County ASIST team includes 22 LivingWorks registered trainers committed to facilitating ASIST workshops in our community. Each ASIST workshop is led by at least two registered LivingWorks trainers. Our trainers are employees of two local universities, the Sheriff's Department, several local nonprofits, Savannah-Chatham County School District, Gateway Community Service Board, Chatham County Safety Net Planning Council, St. Joseph’s/Candler Health System, Memorial University Health System, and Union Mission. Supported by our community partners and donors, ASIST two-day workshops will be conducted at locations throughout Chatham County.

What can I expect at an ASIST workshop?

ASIST is based on principles of adult learning. The workshop is held over two consecutive days for a total of 15 hours. It values participants’ experiences and contributions, encouraging them to share actively in the learning process. Some parts of ASIST take place with all participants together, and others take place in a smaller work group. Local resources are provided and their availability in the community is discussed. Participant materials include a 20-page workbook, wallet card, and stickers. Participants also receive a certificate upon completing the workshop.

What is the cost for attending an ASIST workshop?

Thanks to the generous support of the Chatham County Commissioners and other community sponsors and partners, we are offering the two-day course for $125. (A $250 value).

When and where are ASIST workshops offered?

Chatham County Safety Net Planning Council is offering over 40 ASIST workshops in 2017-2018. To register for a workshop, please visit our registration page, call (912) 661-0577, or email ASIST@chlink.org.

Can my organization sponsor an ASIST workshop?

Yes. Chatham County Safety Net Planning Council, Inc. and Gateway Community Service Board are grateful for the many community partners who are committed to reducing suicides in our community. We welcome additional sponsors and would enjoy talking with you about how your organization can partner with us to implement this program.

If your organization is interested in hosting an ASIST workshop or for other sponsorship opportunities, please call (912) 661-0577, or email ASIST@chlink.org.

Where else can I go for help if I am thinking about suicide?

Please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) to connect with people who want to listen and help. Calls are confidential, and a chat service is also available at https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org/. Service is also available in Spanish.


Click here to register for an upcoming ASIST workshop.

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