Providing help before it’s too late

Providing help before it’s too late

September is Suicide Awareness Month. You may not know that suicide is a topic that scares many people, and as a result, is not discussed often.

However, Pierce College could benefit by offering workshops and classes on what to do in the event that an individual is considering suicide or is having suicidal thoughts.

Suicide is the 12th leading cause of death overall in the United States, with more than 45,900 lives claimed in 2020. Suicide is also the fourth leading cause of death in people 15 to 29 years old, after road injury, tuberculosis and interpersonal violence. 

Nearly 800,000 people die by their own hands each year worldwide. That’s one person who kills themselves every 40 seconds. When you intervene at the right time, these attempts can be prevented.

Pierce College’s Health Center offers Personal Mental Health Counseling for all currently enrolled students in the Los Angeles Community College District (LACCD), regardless of their home college. Students who seek a short-term counseling model can see the psychotherapist up to six times a semester.

Sometimes, having thoughts of suicide can be so severe that having numerous counseling sessions may not be enough to quell them.

Pierce can offer a one-day workshop called QPR-Suicide Training. QPR stands for Question, Persuade and Refer.

This type of workshop was last offered over Zoom by Megan Rowe and hosted by Health Education & Promotion (HEP) on March 16 from 2:30 p.m. to 4 p.m. at California State University, Stanislaus (Stanislaus State or Stan State).

QPR-Suicide Training is an hour-and-a-half training seminar that teaches people about suicide prevention by focusing on common causes, warning signs and how to help someone if they are in crisis.

East Los Angeles College offers a 0.25 unit class called Public Service 179, which is typically offered for all terms and is given on a Pass/No Pass basis. 

The class, which is on Suicide Prevention for Inmates and offers procedures on inmate suicide prevention, was last offered for the Fall 2022 semester on Aug. 29. 

California State University, Northridge (CSUN) created a peer education program to promote awareness and suicide prevention called The Blues Project. 

The Blues Project hosts campus-wide programming each fall as part of Beat the Blues Week and each spring as part of the Semi-Colon Project. The Semi-Colon Project is an international movement to support individuals with suicidal thoughts and self-harm and helps spread the message that their story is not over.

By partnering with The Blues Project, offering a class on suicide prevention, and a workshop on QPR-Suicide Training, Pierce can help the community be more aware of suicide and how harmful it is. Together, they can help save people’s lives, one workshop and project at a time.