TEACH YOUR TEAM involves two types of training: Individual Suicide Prevention Training and Community-Based Suicide Prevention Training.
Individual Suicide Prevention Training offers individuals the skills to know what to do when speaking with someone who may be at risk of suicide. The trainings focus on how to have a conversation about suicide and how to assist individuals who are at risk for suicide in getting to needed services.
Community-Based Suicide Prevention Training uses the five TWV Community-Based Suicide Prevention Strategies designed to reduce Veteran suicide using strategies that are implemented at a community level, rather than one-on-one with Veterans. These strategies are taught to the TWV Team to provide a basis for the action planning process.
A. Prepare for Phase 3
To be ready for implementing Phase 3, the Coordinator will:
- Identify options for individual suicide prevention training
- Prepare to educate the Team about Community-Based Suicide Prevention Strategies
Phase 3 is initiated within 1-2 months after the first meeting of your Team and may extend as far as month 6. Due to this, training will likely overlap with the community assessments conducted in Phase 2.
First, team members will undergo Individual Suicide Prevention training. Later, at approximately month 5, the Team will be educated about Community-Based Suicide Prevention Strategies to provide them with a foundation for TWV suicide prevention planning that will occur in Phase 4.
B. Individual Suicide Prevention Training
Prepare for Individual Suicide Prevention Trainings
Options for Individual Suicide Prevention training are listed in the Individual Suicide Prevention Training Options (Pg. T-35). It is advisable to discuss options with the TWV Steering Committee, or the Team as a whole to determine which training best suits the community needs. Information to consider when choosing trainings may include the amount of time needed for trainings, the trainings that already occur in the community, the availability of Trainers to teach the trainings, or Team members’ interest in a Trainer’s certification or other credentials. Based on these answers, the Coordinator can identify a Trainer and schedule a training.
Coordinate Individual Suicide Prevention Trainings
Suicide prevention training offers individuals the opportunity to learn what to do when speaking with someone who may be at risk of suicide. The trainings focus on how to have a conversation about suicide and how to assist individuals who are at risk for suicide in getting to needed services.
Types of trainings that may be applicable to individuals on the TWV Team may include:
- Question, Persuade, Refer (QPR)
- Signs of suicide, Asking about suicide, Validating feelings, Encouraging help, and Expediting Treatment (SAVE)
- Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training (ASIST)
The coordinator will use the Individual Suicide Prevention Training Options (Pg. T-35) and discuss the following questions, as well as those in Prepare for Phase 3, to determine which suicide prevention trainings the Team would like to take:
- What trainings are offered in their community?
- Which trainings have been most often used in the community to date?
- What is the most efficient way to offer TWV Team members training?
- What trainings will be most sustainable over time in the community?
Based on the preferences of the TWV Team and what is most readily available, the Coordinator will schedule opportunities for the Team to obtain Individual Suicide Prevention Training.
C. TWV Community-Based Suicide Prevention Strategies
Prepare for Community-Based Suicide Prevention Strategies
The Coordinator should review the Community-Based Strategies Presentation (Pg. T-40) to prepare for presenting the material to the Team. Reviewing slides, related notes, and the Overview section (Pg. O-2) of the TWV Toolkit can be helpful in preparing for this meeting.
Teach about Community-Based Suicide Prevention Strategies
Five evidence-based suicide prevention strategies are used by TWV to support the local planning efforts. These strategies, described in the TWV Program Overview, are designed for community-wide implementation to increase awareness and knowledge about Veteran suicide and improve community response to the needs of local Veterans. The five evidence-based strategies are the following:
- Reduce Stigma and Promote Help-Seeking
- Promote Lethal Means Safety
- Provide Suicide Prevention Training
- Enhance Primary Care Suicide Prevention
- Improve Access to Quality Care
These strategies address community needs as described in the table on the following page. The TWV Community-Based Strategies Presentation (Pg. T-40) can be used to provide rationale for the Team on why the strategies were selected based on their known effectiveness to reduce suicides and how to implement the strategies, with examples to inform action planning.