Suicide Prevention Month (September 2017) and World Suicide Prevention Day (September 10, 2017)


September is Suicide Prevention Awareness Month and on September 10th we observe World Suicide Prevention Day. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, suicide was the tenth leading cause of death for all ages in 2014 and was the second leading cause of death for those ages 10-24. Suicide is a global phenomenon that affects all regions of the world. According to the World Health Organization  in 2012, over 800,000 people die due to suicide every year and it is the second leading cause of death among 15-29 year-olds worldwide.

The National Child Traumatic Stress Network (NCTSN) is proud to observe Suicide Prevention Month and World Suicide Prevention Day, and offers the resources listed below to help educate families and communities, mental health and victim services professionals, and policy makers about the profound impact suicide has on men, women, and children.

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Featured NCTSN Resources

Resources to help with traumatic grief following a suicide.
Childhood Traumatic Grief Additional Resources—For Children and Teens (2010) (PDF)
This list includes some of the many books available for children and teens who are dealing with traumatic grief. The list is organized by age group.

Child Traumatic Grief Educational Materials: For School Personnel (2004) (PDF)
This resource presents information for school personnel in two formats: a seven-page in-depth narrative and a one-page, two-sided handout.

Helping Teens with Traumatic Grief: Tips for Caregivers (PDF)
Describes how teens struggling with the death of someone significant may feel and what you can do to help.

Helping Young Children with Traumatic Grief: Tips for Caregivers (PDF) 
Outlines the feelings of children struggling with the death of someone meaningful and what you can do to help.

Schools and Grief: Helping Students Cope With Death   
In this webinar, presenters focus on childhood grief in the school setting: physical and behavioral responses, the effects of development and culture, and the difference between CTG and grief. Presenters also provide strategies for helping children cope with grief in school.

Sibling Death and Childhood Traumatic Grief: Information for Families (2009) (PDF) 
This publication offers caregivers information about the particular grief reactions that a child may have when a brother or sister dies and provides tips to help the grieving child. It includes an extensive listing of books—organized by age of the intended audience—websites, and videos. Sibling Death and Childhood Traumatic Grief also offers self-care advice for caregivers to help them cope with their grief reactions.

Sibling Death and Traumatic Grief Additional Resources—For Children and Teens (2010) (PDF)

Sibling Death and Traumatic Grief Additional Resources—For Professionals (2010) (PDF)

Suicide and Refugees (webpage)
Discusses risks and protective factors for suicide among refugees and provides talking points for discussing suicide with children and adolescents.

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For Clinicians and Mental Health Professionals

American Association of Suicidology

AAS is a membership organization for all those involved in suicide prevention and intervention, and those who are touched by suicide. Its website includes resources for helping those who are struggling with depression and suicidal thoughts, and inspirational stories from suicide attempt survivors.

California Mental Health Services Authority

Suicide Prevention Resource Center

The Suicide Prevention Resource Center (SPRC) promotes the implementation of the National Strategy of Suicide Prevention and enhances the nation’s mental health infrastructure by providing states, government agencies, private organizations, colleges and universities, and suicide survivor and mental health consumer groups with access to the science and experience that can support their efforts to develop programs, implement interventions, and promote policies to prevent suicide. 

  • Findings: Programs and Practices
    The BPR is designed to support program planners in creating effective suicide prevention programs. This section defines the term “evidence-based” and its relationship to effective prevention, explains how the BPR incorporates the best available research evidence, and provides specific suggestions for using the BPR as a resource for developing effective prevention programs.
  • Foster Care Providers: Helping Youth at Risk of Suicide (2014)(PDF)
    This sheet for foster care providers covers information on how to recognize and respond to warning signs of suicide, access help, and build resiliency in youth in foster care. It also includes a resource list.

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For Educators

American Foundation for Suicide Prevention
AFSP raises awareness, funds scientific research and provides resources and aid to those affected by suicide.

National Association of School Psychologists
NASP empowers school psychologists by advancing effective practices to improve students’ learning, behavior, and mental health.

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration Suicide Prevention
SAMHSA’s website provides behavioral health professionals with suicide prevention information and other helpful resources such as screening tools and trainings.

  • Preventing Suicide: A Toolkit for High Schools (2012)(PDF)
    Assists high schools and school districts in designing and implementing strategies to prevent suicide and promote behavioral health. Includes tools to implement a multi-faceted suicide prevention program that responds to the needs and cultures of students.
  • Preventing Suicide on College Campuses (PDF)(2011)
    Explores suicide among college students and reports on suicide prevention programs targeted to college campuses.

Suicide Prevention Resource Center

  • After a Suicide: A Toolkit for SChools (2011)(PDF)
    This toolkit is designed to assist schools in the aftermath of a suicide (or other death) in the school community. It is meant to serve as a practical resource for schools facing real-time crises in order to help them determine what to do, when, and how. 

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For Journalists

American Foundation for Suicide Foundation

  • Recommendations for Reporting on Suicide (2012)(PDF)
    The Recommendations for Reporting on Suicide were developed by leading experts in suicide prevention and in collaboration with several international suicide prevention and public health organizations, schools of journalism, media organizations and key journalists as well as Internet safety experts.

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For Law Enforcement and Judicial Personnel

Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention
The Office strives to strengthen the juvenile justice system’s efforts to protect public safety, hold offenders accountable, and provide services that address the needs of youth and their families.

  • Suicidal Thoughts and Behaviors Among Detained Youth (2014)(PDF)
    Summarizes the methods, findings, and implications of a study on suicidal thoughts and behaviors among detained youth ages 10-18 who were part of the Northwestern Juvenile Project, a longitudinal study of juvenile detainees.

Suicide Prevention Resource Center

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Military Families

Veterans Crises Line
The Veterans Crisis Line connects Veterans in crisis and their families and friends with qualified, caring Department of Veterans Affairs responders through a confidential toll-free hotline, online chat, or text.

      * Suicide Prevention Information
      * Resources and Programs
      * Military Suicide Prevention and Mental Health Information by Branch


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For Parents and Caregivers


JED is a nonprofit that exists to protect emotional health and prevent suicide for our nation’s teens and young adults. Jed partners with high schools and colleges to strengthen their mental health, substance abuse and suicide prevention programs and systems.

  • For Families and Communities
    Webpage provides the information and perspective families need to recognize the signs of a potential emotional problem and help their loved one find the proper support and treatment.

Suicide Prevention Resource Center
SPRC is the nation’s only federally supported resource center devoted to advancing the National Strategy for Suicide Prevention. SPRC provides technical assistance, training, and materials to increase the knowledge and expertise of suicide prevention practitioners and other professionals serving people at risk for suicide. They also promote collaboration among a variety of organizations that play a role in developing the field of suicide prevention.

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For Policy Makers

World Health Organization

  • Preventing Suicide: A Global Imperative (2014) (PDF)
    The report aims to increase awareness of the public health significance of suicide and suicide attempts and to make suicide prevention a higher priority on the global public health agenda. The report is intended to be a resource that will allow policymakers and other stakeholders to make suicide prevention an imperative. 

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For Youth

JED is a nonprofit that exists to protect emotional health and prevent suicide for our nation’s teens and young adults. Jed partners with high schools and colleges to strengthen their mental health, substance abuse and suicide prevention programs and systems.

  • Mental Health REsource Center for Young Adult Emotional Health and Well-being
    JED’s Mental Health Resource Center provides essential information about common emotional health issues and shows teens and young adults how they can support one another, overcome challenges and make a successful transition to adulthood.
  • Help a Friend in Need (PDF) (2014)
    Provides tips on what to do if youth see a friend posting distressing content on Facebook or Instagram, or if they are behaving dramatically differently than usual.

Society for the Prevention of Teen Suicide
The mission of the Society for the Prevention of Teen Suicide is to reduce the number of youth suicides and attempted suicides by encouraging public awareness through the development and promotion of educational training programs.

The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
Provides free and confidential emotional support to people in suicidal crisis or emotional distress 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Since its inception, the Lifeline has engaged in a variety of initiatives to improve crisis services and advance suicide prevention.

  • You Matter
    Youth blog website with content written by youth on various topics including: self-care; depression; stress; mental health; etc. Also provides information on how to get help for yourself or someone else, and suicide warning signs.

The Trevor Project
A national organization that provides “crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning youth. . . . The Trevor Lifeline is the only nationwide, around-the-clock crisis and suicide prevention lifeline for LGBTQ youth . . . a free and confidential service that offers hope and someone to talk to, 24/7. Each year, tens of thousands of calls are fielded from young people across the country.” The website includes a directory of local services, tips for helping LGBTQ youth, workshops, resources for educators and parents, a live chat line with trained volunteers, and much more.

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