MHANJ Expands Educational Outreach with Suicide Prevention Training

The MHANJ Expands Educational Outreach with Suicide Prevention Training

The Mental Health Association in New Jersey (MHANJ) is providing QPR (Question, Persuade, Refer) Training. QPR is an evidence-based strategy designed to teach people the warning signs of suicide and prepare them to respond.

According to the NJ State Health Assessment Data, (SHAD) suicide is the 10th leading cause of death nationwide and the 13th leading cause of death in New Jersey. Additionally, it is the second leading cause of death in New Jersey for young people age ten to thirty-four years old.

QPR Training is an important addition to the MHANJ’s roster of educational programs because it specifically addresses this critical issue in national and state public health. As one of the premier behavioral healthcare institutions in the New Jersey, the MHANJ felt compelled to expand services to provide it.

“There are many approaches to suicide intervention, but the QPR program provides a succinct set of tools based on peer reviewed material and backed by years of research,” stated Robert Kley, MHANJ’s Vice President and COO.

QPR’s mission statement reads, “Our goal is to reduce suicidal behaviors and save lives by providing innovative, practical and proven suicide prevention training.” The MHANJ is pleased to collaborate on this worthy goal.

As part of that commitment to suicide prevention, in January of this year, the MHANJ had ten of its mental health peers and professionals become certified as QPR “Gatekeeper Trainers.” These Trainers are qualified to educate Gatekeepers, that is anyone strategically positioned to recognize someone at risk of suicide and refer them to appropriate services.

About QPR Training

QPR training educates and empowers people to make a positive difference by recognizing someone may be in distress and then having the courage to let the person know they are concerned.

The training is clear and concise requiring just a one-hour time commitment.  “It is designed for anyone, even those with no previous training in suicide intervention,” remarked Jaime Angelini, Director of Disaster Response and Special Projects for MHANJ. “Those who take the training will leave more hopeful in their ability to have difficult conversations; they will be more prepared to recognize the signs of someone in crisis and they will walk away feeling like they can help someone.”

QPR Training Encompasses:

  • How to recognize the warning signs of suicide
  • How to offer hope
  • How to get help and save a life

Examples of Gatekeepers include:

parents                 teachers               police officers

friends                  coaches               clergy

neighbors             case workers       EMT’s

For more information about QPR training please contact Jaime Angelini, Director of Disaster Response and Special Projects, jangellini@mhanj.org.