We have 10 Regional Coalitions in the Berkshires, Pioneer Valley, Central MA, Metrowest, Northeast, Greater Boston, Plymouth, Bristol County and Cape and Islands, and now the Montachusett Task Force, approved as a Regional Coalition in February of 2016. Each of our Regional Coalitions receives funding from the MCSP for regional initiatives and efforts. See below for some of our 2014 accomplishments:
Regional Coalition Activities for FY15
Cape and Islands Regional Coalition
Directly reached over 650 individuals in community outreach events and presentations about suicide prevention, and trained over 440 community members in QPR and ASIST.
Trained 38 emergency responders representing all fifteen towns on Cape Cod as well as Martha’s Vineyard in effective on-scene management for suicide prevention
Hosted community awareness raising event featuring NPR’s The Moth Radio Hour Host and Storyteller Brian Finkelstein’s First Day Off in a Long Time. A dark comedy about Brian’s time as a suicide prevention hotline volunteer, the event reached over 120 community members and was co-sponsored by the Cape and Islands NPR station.
CISPC Co-Chair and Steering Committee member featured on Cape and Islands NPR’s show The Point with Mindy Todd to promote suicide prevention awareness and our event with The Moth Radio Hour’s Brian Finkelstein. Over 11 days, 38 promotional ads about the Coalition were heard by thousands of NPR Cape and Islands listeners.
Hosted two free community presentations of Attempting Suicide and Finding Life by author and attempt survivor Craig Miller on Nantucket and at Cape Cod Community College for 75 attendee and provided copies of Craig’s book to local libraries
Hosted free community Postvention Panel featuring Larry Berkowitz from Riverside Trauma Center and several local community leaders at Coalition’s general membership meeting for 55 attendees
Held free public screening of three documentaries for over 140 community members, including A Voice at the Table, What Happened Here: The Untold Story of Addiction on Cape Cod, and Crisis Line: Veterans Press 1
Bristol County Regional Coalition
Nine Leadership Awards were presented to individuals who have had a positive impact on suicide prevention within Bristol and Plymouth Counties. Multiple new contacts were gathered from this event—attended by 110 people– for coalition membership and trainings, and pre and post press coverage reached several thousand people within both counties and beyond.
The BCRCSP presented a workshop at the DPH Annual Suicide Prevention Conference to introduce the Re-Energize & Re-Connect Workshop Programs and the upcoming workbook for friends and family of suicide attempt survivors, “Is This the Night?” This workshop was replicated in early May at the Colorado Suicide Prevention Summit – Bridging the Divide.
Provided safeTALK training FY15 for 120 adults & teen participants combined.
A Community Conversation – Talking to Your Teens about the Suicide Loss of a Friend event was attended by 62 parents & community leaders, including state representatives, the mayor and city council members. This event was followed by a local cable access program reviewing the content of the presentation. The PowerPoint was submitted to Taunton Public Schools to add to their online resources for parents.
September 2014, the BCRCSP held the 5th Annual Light the Way Suicide Prevention Walk in Taunton. All time & printed materials were in-kind. BCRCSP covered the costs of food. 181 people participated
The BCRCSP collaborated with the Greater Taunton Violence Prevention Task Force and New Hope, Inc. to present a community based special event on Domestic Violence, Cyberbullying & Suicide attended by 50 adults & teens. This event garnered substantial press & social media coverage as well as a follow up local cable access program, reaching several thousand people.
In partnership with the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, The BCRCSP hosted ASIST trainings in December, January and April in Raynham, East Freetown & Taunton.
Central MA Regional Coalition
Had an International Survivor Day at the Nativity School in Worcester in collaboration with the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP) on November 15h, 2014
Created a Facebook and Website for the Central MA Suicide Prevention Coalition. Created new brochures, table linens and stand up poster with updated information of the coalition
Hired Dorothy Swope, consultant, to help organize the coalition and draft the by-laws
Networked for the Coalition at the Fundraiser at Fenway Park for AFSP
Had a training for First Responders on how to respond to suicidal clients. Attended by approximately 50 First Responders.
Northeast Regional Coalition
Held our 8th Leadership Breakfast at Holy Family Hospital in Methuen – Craig Miller was the keynote speaker along with a panel of suicide attempt survivors – about 95 people attended
Hosted an all day Best Practices in Suicide Assessment and Intervention training with Riverside – 72 people in attendance
Hosted the first Community Mental Health and Wellness Forum in Wakefield with 70 attendees – Larry did a talk on resiliency and Kelley Cunningham discussed signs of anxiety and depression – had 10 resource tables available for people to visit – provided a resource guide for all six communities – Lynnfield, Melrose, Reading, Saugus, Stoneham, and Wakefield
Received 22 new membership forms – developed a call to action letter that was given out at every NCSP event
Held our 5th AFSP survivors of suicide loss day – we had 36 attendees – had a holiday remembrance tree – provided rubber wrist bands – provided holiday cards based on the ornament each one brought in – provided a copy of the AFSP DVD to those who wanted it
Did one 2-day survivor voices training with 4 people
Funded 19 radio PSAs on MassMen, some of which were run during Red Sox games on 104.9 fm
Paid for a designer to come up with a logo for the Northeast coalition
Metrowest Regional Coalition
Celebrated 1 year of the launch of our Region’s Coalition, supporting our mission of actively engaging with area programs, services and individuals to promote awareness and reduce the incidence of suicide in our region of the state.
Responded to the request to provide and distribute the MetroWest Region Suicide Prevention Resource Guide. Guide contains local phone numbers and websites, helpful information concerning warning signs and risk factors as well as local Veterans Office information. Several hundred copies distributed to date.
Collaborated with other area programs and funders to provide community trainings including Mental Health First Aid, safeTALK, ASIST and SOS amounting to over 500 individuals participating.
Created a logo and collateral material to distribute and spread awareness.
Hosted guest speakers at all meetings to enhance area partnerships and strengthen initiatives. Many programs and services developed working relationships and projects that would have never resulted without the MetroWest Regional Coalition
Collaborated with Samaritans of the Cape & Islands to bring “In Our Shoes” project to MetroWest.
Sponsoring Lasell College’s first Fresh Check Day, Spring 2016.
Greater Boston Regional Coalition
Membership recruitment – more than quadrupled our membership count. From 20 members and to over 90 members by year’s end.
The coalition worked with a professional focus group facilitator and anthropologist to conduct focus groups with Boston’s minority communities. Focus groups were conducted to assess for different communities perceptions of suicide, mental health, and support/treatment in the community. For each community, 2 focus groups were held: one with individual community members and one with service providers. A 30-page analysis of the focus group results will be disseminated in FY16
The six focus groups included 53 total participants and covered the following populations:
○Asian (including both Asian-born and Asian-American)
○Haitian (including both Haitian-born and Haitian-American)
○Latino (born in Spanish-speaking countries or identifying as Latino or
Hispanic, including Spanish-speaking adolescents)
Created a 30-page report detailing the results of the focus groups to be disseminated to professionals, providers, agencies, media, and to communities.
Collaborated with MassMen.org to promote Man Therapy through advertising on several of Boston’s MBTA Subway lines.
Pioneer Valley Regional Coalition
125 people attended the Pioneer Valley Regional Coalition conference which was held on November 22nd in collaboration with Springfield College “Substance use and Suicide: Exploring the connection”
MassMen: In the Spring the coalition hosted a kick off breakfast for the launch of MASSMEN and Mantherapy. Franklin Cook presented at the event. In addition materials were sent to area providers and posters were printed and distributed to promote the site. The Coalition also printed 10 bus ads to be be placed on busses throughout the Pioneer Valley over the summer months.
The coalition held 12 meetings during the Fiscal Year
During the month of September in recognition of Suicide Prevention Day, two ads were developed, one highlighting the statewide help line which ran in the Valley Advocate paper and a second ad highlighting the Alternatives to Suicide peer support groups which ran in the Point of View paper targeting African American communities in the valley
The coalition also sponsored the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention Out of the Darkness awareness walk in Springfield. Coalition members tabled at the walk and provided information about the coalition. The coalition also sponsored the NAMI annual Mental Health Awareness Walk
Berkshire Regional Coalition
Partnered with Berkshire Medical Center (BMC) on a full-day conference, Suicide & Traumatic Loss: Helping Survivors Cope, focusing on support for survivors of suicide loss to an audience of 92 mental health providers, survivors, faith leaders & funeral home staff.
Partnered on presentation of Collaborative Assessment and Management of Suicidality (CAMS)and the Role of Attempt Survivors in Suicide Prevention with Dr. Alex Sabo of BMC Psychiatry and Craig Miller
Partnered on Screening of Truth about Suicide at Berkshire Community College, followed by a panel discussion
Sponsored trainings including: Suicide & Aging: Gatekeeper Workshops (presented by Family Services of Merrimack Valley) and Substance Abuse & Suicide Prevention Workshop (presented by Franklin Cook),
Partnered with the Youth Suicide Prevention Project on best practices suicide prevention trainings including: CONNECT, ASIST, SafeTALK and Youth Mental Health First Aid
Collaborated with 8 local organizations on an EXPO of Resources (including mental healthcare and suicide prevention) for veterans, national guard, active military, their families and providers
Multi-agency collaboration for Annual Berkshire County Legislative Breakfast
Support to Transitional Aged Youth & Systems of Care Committees addressing gaps in services & resources
Co-sponsored the 2nd annual LGBTQIA+ Community Forum at Mass College of Liberal Arts, attended by 85, including youth and elders
Plymouth Regional Coalition
80 Plymouth County National Guardsmen and Woman ASIST Trained
750 Massachusetts Military Trained
Trainings delivered included –ASIST, 7 Safe Talk trainings, More than Sad, QPR, Mental Health First Aid
Took part in World Survivor Day at Hope Floats in Kingston in September 2014
Collaborated with the Scituate/Marshfield Coalition to host a Mental Health Forum in June of 2015
In November of 2014, one our Coalition Members was awarded a Grant from Joyal Capital of Plymouth, an organization which grants wishes to children who are impacted by tragedy or hardship. This grant was shared with the Plymouth Coalition and gifted to children who were also effected by suicide for a day of carefree shopping. Because of this grant, our Coalition was able to grant 7 children with a gift of $100 each
Two Plymouth County Recipients—Jeff House and State Representative James Cantwell– were given Leadership in Suicide Education & Prevention Awards at an Annual Legislative Breakfast in March of 2015
Facebook page created in May 2015, over 150 followers within 24 hours, currently more than 200 followers
Appeared in Several articles in Old Colony Memorial, Patriot Ledger as well as several Wicked Local publication in Plymouth, Norfolk and Bristol Counties
Formed relationships with schools in Attleboro, Wareham, Old Rochester Regional High School to assist with trainings.