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Upcoming Trainings

To learn more about suicide prevention or youth mental health, consider joining the YSA for an upcoming QPR Training or Youth Mental Health First Aid. All trainings are free of charge but space is limited. Click the date link to register:

QPR Trainings

New classes will be offered this fall. Check back for updates!

Youth Mental Health First Aid

New classes will be offered this fall. Check back for updates!

Contact Alli Holstrom, YSA Chair at or 410-222-7423 x4 with any questions. 

Gatekeeper trainings are trainings designed to prepare an individual to recognize warnings signs of suicide and to talk to someone who might be considering suicide as an option.  There are several different types of Gatekeeper Trainings available for anyone interested in becoming part of the “safety net” for our community.
QPR – Question, Persuade Refer

The YSA actively supports and promotes the use of the QPR gatekeeper model.  To date, over 10,000 people in our community have been trained in QPR in an effort to reduce suicide deaths in Anne Arundel County. 

QPR stands for Question, Persuade, and Refer -- 3 simple steps that anyone can learn to help save a life from suicide. Just as people trained in CPR and the Heimlich Maneuver help save thousands of lives each year, people trained in QPR learn how to recognize the warning signs of a suicide crisis and how to question, persuade, and refer someone to help. Each year thousands of Americans, like you, are saying "Yes" to saving the life of a friend, colleague, sibling, or neighbor. QPR can be learned in our Gatekeeper course in as little as one hour.

To learn more about QPR, visit the QPR Institute  or for our QPR informational flyer click either - View Download

If you have questions about QPR or would like to talk about how a QPR training might be tailored to the needs of your group or organization, please contact Alli Holstrom at 410-222-7423 x5 or To schedule a QPR training for your group or organization, or to find out about upcoming trainings in our community, please contact Princess Fralin at Anne Arundel Community College by calling 410-777-1844 or via email at Upcoming trainings can also be found on the YSA Calendar. 

Kids at Hope
Kids at Hope's vision is that every child is afforded the belief, guidance and encouragement that creates a sense of hope and optimism, supported by a course of action needed to experience success at life’s four major destinations: Home & Family; Education & Career; Community & Service; and Hobbies & Recreation. Kids at Hope inspires, empowers, and transforms families, youth serving organizations (schools, parks and recreation departments, police and fire departments, etc.) and entire communities to create an environment where all children experience success, NO EXCEPTIONS! Kids at Hope offers multiple trainings for both parents and professionals, ranging from 2.5 hours to 2 days depending on the module.

For more information, visit the Kids at Hope website.

CALM - Counseling on Access to Lethal Means

Developed by Elaine Frank and Mark Ciocca, CALM: Counseling on Access to Lethal Means is a 1.5 to 2 hour workshop designed to help providers implement counseling strategies to help clients at risk for suicide and their families reduce access to lethal means, particularly (but not exclusively) firearms. It includes a number of components: background on suicide data and lethal means; an introduction to firearms; video presentation that models the counseling strategy; a presentation and discussion on conducting a counseling session; optional role plays; and a course evaluation.

A typical 90-minute training agenda includes:

  1. The problem: Youth suicide and access to lethal means (PowerPoint, 25 minutes).
  2. Introduction to firearms and their operation (PowerPoint, 15 minutes).
  3. Negotiation of means restriction (video presentation, 15 minutes).
  4. Conducting a family firearms assessment (PowerPoint and discussion, 30 minutes)
  5. Wrap-up and evaluation (5 minutes).

For more information, visit the SPRC's Best Practices Registry or contact:

Elaine Frank
Director, CALM
Injury Prevention Center at Children’s Hospital at Dartmouth, Lebanon, NH
Voice: 603-653-1135
Fax: 603-653-1139

Youth Mental Health First Aid

Youth Mental Health First Aid is designed to teach parents, family members, caregivers, teachers, school staff, peers,
neighbors, health and human services workers, and other caring citizens how to help an adolescent (age 12-18) who is experiencing a mental health or addictions challenge or is in crisis. Youth Mental Health First Aid is primarily designed for adults who regularly interact with young people. The course introduces common mental health challenges for youth, reviews typical adolescent development, and teaches a 5-step action plan for how to help young people in both crisis and non-crisis situations. Topics covered include anxiety, depression, substance use, disorders in which psychosis may occur, disruptive behavior disorders (including AD/HD), and eating disorders.

There are also adult Mental Health First Aid courses available with specialized instruction for military families, rural communities, and public safety.   If you are interested in taking a class, contact Cari Bixler of the AACC TEACH Institute and Parenting Center by emailing or calling 410-777-2401.

safeTALK - Suicide Alertness for Everyone

safeTALK, about three hours in duration, is a training that prepares anyone over the age of 15 to identify persons with thoughts of suicide and connect them to suicide first aid resources. Most people with thoughts of suicide invite help to stay safe. Alert helpers know how to use these opportunities to support that desire for safety. As a safeTALK-trained suicide alert helper, you will be better able to:

  • move beyond common tendencies to miss, dismiss or avoid suicide;
  • identify people who have thoughts of suicide;
  • apply the TALK steps (Tell, Ask, Listen and KeepSafe) to connect a person with suicide thoughts to suicide first aid, intervention caregivers.

Powerful video clips illustrate both non-alert and alert responses. Discussion and practice help stimulate learning. Learn steps that contribute to saving lives.

Visit the LivingWorks Website to learn more about safeTALK or to take part in an upcoming training.

ASIST -Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training

The ASIST workshop is for caregivers who want to feel more comfortable, confident and competent in helping to prevent the immediate risk of suicide. Over one million caregivers have participated in this two-day, highly interactive, practical, practice-oriented workshop.  

Participation in the full two days is required. Enjoy small group discussions and skills practice that are based upon adult learning principles. Experience powerful videos on suicide intervention. Feel challenged and safe. Learn suicide first aid. Visit the LivingWorks Website to learn more about ASIST or to take part in an upcoming training.

Youth Suicide Awareness Action Team,
Mar 26, 2013, 5:00 PM
Youth Suicide Awareness Action Team,
Apr 26, 2016, 8:29 AM