Suicide Prevention

Our generation tends to keep things to themselves and not talk about what’s going on, especially when it comes to our mental health. When life gets overwhelming with new responsibilities and stress, we need to reach out to a trusted adult when something is bothering us or when we just want to talk about things. We feel pressured to go out with friends, be an active family member, and stay involved as a student. This can cause high levels of stress and anxiety, and even lead to depression. The thing you need to remember is that you are not alone – 1 in 5 youth experience a mental health challenge.  Don’t be afraid to reach out to a trusted adult — like a teacher, coach or parent. Find ways to connect with a trusted adult here!

Suicide Awareness Video


Signs of Suicide


Warning signs are immediate risks and need to be addressed right away. Important signs that a young person may be considering suicide include:

  • Dramatic changes in mood
  • Threatening to hurt or kill themselves
  • Changes in sleeping patterns
  • Crying spells
  • Talking or writing about death, dying, or suicide
  • Changes in school performance
  • Withdrawing from friends and family
  • Losing interest in activities once enjoyed, without replacing them with new activities
  • Increasing alcohol or drug use
  • Recently experienced grief or loss
  • Expressing hopelessness, no reason for living, or having no sense of purpose in life
  • Experiencing rage, anger, agitation, or seeking revenge
  • Feeling trapped
  • Giving away prized possessions
  • Acting recklessly or engaging in risky behaviors

Want to learn how to recognize the signs and symptoms of suicide and become a trusted adult for youth?

Signs of Suicide Prevention Program


The SOS Signs of Suicide Prevention Program (SOS) is a universal, school-based depression awareness and suicide prevention program designed for middle-school (ages 11–13) or high-school (ages 13–17) students. The goals are to 1) decrease suicide and suicide attempts by increasing student knowledge and adaptive attitudes about depression, 2) encourage personal help-seeking and/or help-seeking on behalf of a friend, 3) reduce the stigma of mental illness and acknowledge the importance of seeking help or treatment, 4) engage parents and school staff as partners in prevention through “gatekeeper” education, and 5) encourage schools to develop community-based partnerships to support student mental health.

The SOS curriculum includes lessons on raising awareness of depression and suicide, helping students identify the warning signs of depression in themselves and others, identifying risk factors associated with depression and suicidal ideation, and using a brief screening for depression and/or suicidal behavior. Students are taught to seek help using the ACT (Acknowledge, Care, Tell) technique. This technique teaches students to acknowledge when there are signs of a problem in themselves or a peer, show that you care and are concerned about getting help, and tell a trusted adult. Upon completion of the program, students are given response cards to indicate if they would like to speak to a trusted adult about themselves or a friend.

Want to learn more about the Signs of Suicide Prevention program? Contact Rikki Barton at rbarton@cpozarks.org.

Where to Reach Out


Talk to a Counselor

Burrell Behavioral Health

Counseling services that help youth and their family work on the issues that are leading to a stressful home life.

1300 E Bradford Parkway
417-761-5430

Preferred Family Healthcare

Providing substance use treatment services for men and women.

2415 W Catalpa St
417-862-3455

Hand in Hand Multicultural Center

Provides programs to empower individuals, ethnic and minority families, disadvantaged, and at-risk populations to become healthier.

1436 W Hovey St
417-865-4673

Lost and Found Grief Center

Grief support services for ages 3-18.

1555 S Glenstone Ave
417-865-9998

Boys and Girls Club

Focuses on building leadership skills and self- esteem, offering supervised recreational and athletic activities, learning centers, substance abuse prevention programs, career counseling and more.

1300 N Boonville
417-862-9249

The Victim Center

Offers aid, crisis support, and counseling to survivors of violent and sexual crime.

819 N Boonville
417-863-7273

Rare Breed Youth Outreach Center

Drop-in center and transitional living for youth ages 16-21 years.

301 N Main
417-865-6400

Self-Help Activities


  • Faith-based Activities
  • Yoga
  • Meditation
  • Exercise
  • Drawing
  • Painting
  • Music
  • Journaling
  • Breathing Techniques

Other Places for Help


NAMI

Provides over 30 support groups for various mental health issues for individuals with mental illness, their family and friends. The Warm Line is a dedicated peer support phone line for people with mental illness and is open 7 days a week.

Office: 417-864-7119 Warm Line: 417-864-3676

GLO Community Center

Provides support to the gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender (GLBT) community in the greater Springfield region through community activities and education.

417-869-3978

YMCA

Provides compressive health, fitness, aquatics, youth, sports, camping and educational programs for all.

Pat Jones 417-881-1599 Downtown 417-862-7456

Alateen

For teen alcoholics.

417-885-9114

Narcotics Anonymous

Support for recovering drug addicts who meet to help each other stay clean.

855-866-7392