safeTALK – become a suicide alert helper


I was fortunate yesterday to have a colleague of mine run me through the half-day safeTALK workshop.

safeTALK, developed by LivingWorks Australia, is a “half-day alertness workshop that prepares anyone over the age of 15, regardless of prior experience or training, to become a suicide-alert helper”

What does that mean?

Basically, the workshop gives you the skills and knowledge required to identify individuals who may be at risk of suicide, initiate a conversation with them and ask about risk, and then link them to appropriate help if required.

The workshop is targeted at the general public, with the philosophy that the more people who know about and can provide an initial response to those having suicidal thoughts, the more likely it is as a community we can prevent suicide.

Suicide is a topic that still has a lot of stigma attached to it, and a reluctance to talk openly about it. Unfortunately though, in 2016, suicide was the leading cause of death among all people 15-44 years of age.

Programs like safeTALK seek to address that stigma head-on and provide individuals with practical and easy to understand ways of opening up a conversation with someone they are concerned about, and then connect them to the appropriate supports.

There are no safeTALK workshops booked for Adelaide in 2018 as yet. You can however go online and for $20 complete the shorter, but related eSuicideTALK program.

Click to visit site

If you would like to see the safeTALK program run here at Flinders, let me know via the contact details below. Also, feel free to ask any questions you have about the program and I will try to answer them.

Want to comment on this article, or ask me a question about the health and well-being services available to you as a student? Feel free to comment below, abuse me on Twitter (@Dr_Furber), contact me on Skype (search for ‘eMental Health Project Officer Gareth’), or email me (

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