A place to begin: Suicide is one of the leading causes of preventable death in our nation today. We lose approximately 100 young people each week to this tragedy that can be prevented.
In 2008, in the wake of a devastating string of youth suicides, the Anne Arundel County Partnership for Children, Youth & Families spearheaded the founding of a community-based collaborative of citizens, county agencies and other child-serving organizations to address this issue on a broad scale. This group, now known as the Youth Suicide Awareness (YSA) Action Team, meets monthly and is over 70 individuals strong with representation from over 20 county and community agencies and organizations.
The YSA believes that education is the key to prevention. Committed to that, we have implemented trainings that teach adults and youth how to recognize the signs and risk factors of suicidal ideation, open a dialog with a person in crisis, and get them into the hands of a mental health professional. To date, nearly 10,000 people – including parents, social workers, community groups, and all public school employees – have received this training. In 2012 the YSA received both a State of Maryland Governor’s Citation and a Certificate of Recognition from the Anne Arundel County Board of Education for all of our suicide awareness and prevention efforts over the last four years.
is Preventable. Never be reluctant to get involved and always take any
child/adolescent’s expression of intent to harm themselves seriously. If you suspect a young person
of suicidal ideation, get them to professional help immediately.