Garrett Lee Smith Youth Suicide Prevention Grant

Website: Prevent Suicide PA

In partnership with Drexel University, Thomas Jefferson University, and the STAR Center, this grant focuses on implementing suicide prevention (awareness and training) and early intervention (screening and treatment) strategies for youth ages 10-25 across Pennsylvania and is utilizing the existing Student Assistance Program (SAP) infrastructure to increase early detection of youth that may be at risk for suicide.

GLS Suicide Prevention in Schools and Colleges Grant Overview

OMHSAS has been awarded a Suicide Prevention in Schools and Colleges Grant from SAMHSA. This grant is a 5 year, $736,000/year grant with no state match requirement.  The grant will provide gatekeeper training, suicide risk management training, standardized screening, and training in empirically supported treatments to schools, community colleges, and universities throughout the Commonwealth.  The project will raise awareness, increase identification of an at-risk youth, facilitate referrals to treatment, and improve treatment outcomes.

Building on the Student Assistant Program in Pennsylvania schools, we will provide gatekeeper training and state of the art screening tools to appropriate school personnel and the behavioral health systems that serve these schools.

Project goals and measurable objectives include: 

  • increasing the number of persons in schools, colleges, and universities, trained to identify and refer youth at risk for suicide,
  • increasing the number of youth and young adults screened and referred for treatment,
  • increasing the number of clinical service providers trained to assess, manage, and treat youth at risk for suicide,
  • increasing awareness about youth suicide prevention, specifically including the promotion and utilization of the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline,
  • comprehensively implementing applicable sections of the 2012 National Strategy for Suicide Prevention to reduce rates of suicidal ideation, suicide attempts, and suicide deaths in their communities, and
  • promoting state system-level change to advance suicide prevention efforts in our public schools, community colleges, and universities.

With gatekeeper training and awareness campaigns, we plan to reach 186,000 youth over 5 years.  With screening in schools, colleges, and primary care practices, we plan to reach approximately 26,000 indicated youth over 5 years.  Our total impact will be felt by an estimated 212,000 youth across Pennsylvania.

Overview presentation 2018