No Room For Error Event Toolkit

What is a "No Room For Error" Event?

"No Room For Error" was an event format designed by a high school student named Arden Coffelt as part of her Gold Award Project for Girl Scouts. Arden chose the topic of suicide prevention as the focus of her project because it was an issue she felt passionate about. Arden felt that a lot of students struggled with the stresses and pressures of being a teenager and often didn't know how to help themselves or others - and she wanted to help change that.  NRFE is geared towards teen populations (both middle and high school) and provides a unique opportunity talk candidly about the issue of teen suicide and provide concrete information and tips for how to intervene with someone at-risk for suicide and help them access care, stay safe and LIVE. As many teens struggle with feelings of stress and anxiety that can lead to feelings of being hopeless and unable to cope, she also felt strongly about educating teens on how to identify those feelings and handle them in a way that was healthy.

The YSA supported the very first "No Room For Error" event held in 2015 and is committed to bringing this awesome event to other teens in our community. We worked closely with Arden to develop this toolkit for anyone interested in helping us spread the word, educate youth about suicide prevention, and help them learn how to manage stress in a positive, healthy way.

Why is suicide prevention education important? 

Unfortunately, as of 2015 suicide is the 2nd leading cause of death in the United States for young people between the ages of 10 and 24. In Anne Arundel County, this has been the case for many years.  According to the 2013 Youth Risk BehaviorSurveillance System (YRBSS) Report (a nationwide survey of youth in grades 9–12 in public and private schools in the US) found that 17% of students reported seriously considering suicide and 8% reporting trying to take their own life in the 12 months preceding the survey.  Additionally, 29.9% of youth surveyed said that they felt so sad or hopeless for at least two weeks during the 12 months preceding the survey that they stopped doing some usual activities.  

Some estimate as many as 80% of those thinking about suicide want others to be aware of their emotional pain and stop them from dying. A warning sign does not automatically mean a person is going to attempt suicide, but it should be taken seriously. The YSA believes that middle, high school, and college students can and should learn the warning signs and intervention strategies to help their friends. We don’t expect them to conduct a professional assessment but we want them to befriend a person in despair and offer support and reassurance and referral to help. "No Room For Error" provides a great opportunity for youth to do just that!

So how do I plan a "No Room for Error" event of my own?

If you live in Anne Arundel County, the YSA would be happy to talk to you about collaborating on a "No Room For Error" Event! To begin the conversation, contact Alli Holstrom, YSA Chair, at or call her at 410-222-7423x4. 

If you don't live in our area, or would like to host an NRFE event independent of the YSA, you can do that too! Download a copy of our NRFE Planning Guide for full instructions on how to organize your own event. (Please download the document to your computer and open in a pdf viewer for best readability.)

In addition, here are some other things that may help you:
What do I do if I have questions about NRFE?

Feel free to contact Alli Holstrom, YSA Chair, with any questions or concerns about NRFE at or by calling 410-222-7423 x4. 
Youth Suicide Awareness Action Team,
Sep 2, 2015, 8:47 AM
Youth Suicide Awareness Action Team,
Aug 28, 2015, 9:30 AM
Youth Suicide Awareness Action Team,
Aug 27, 2015, 1:33 PM
Youth Suicide Awareness Action Team,
Sep 2, 2015, 9:16 AM