Best Practices for a Youth Suicide Prevention Program
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Suicide is a leading cause of death amongst adolescents. This has perpetuated increased concern and motivation for providers in suicide prevention education to develop more comprehensive approaches to youth suicide prevention. The research indicates that schools are ideal settings to address suicide since peers are considered to be the primary gatekeepers in youth suicide prevention and hence at risk youth can best be identified in this milieu. In this thesis, two BC school-based prevention education programs—the Vancouver Crisis Centre and The Vancouver Central Island Crisis Society—will be compared to a comprehensive literature review of school-based prevention programs conducted by Lazear, Roggenbaum, and Blasé (2003) to determine which program best adheres to the components identified by these researchers as a best practices‘ model in youth suicide prevention. A qualitative thematic analysis indicates that both programs adhere to most of the components, with one placing emphasis on building resilience and the other, while also emphasizing resilience, highlights peer gatekeeping. This thesis invites researchers to take a collaborative view to suicide prevention by having conversations that explore new possibilities for comprehensive approaches.