Connecting with School Communities about Suicide: Hope and Resilience in Southeast Alberta

Connecting with School Communities about Suicide: Hope and Resilience in Southeast Alberta

Recently, there has been a series of deaths by suicide in the southeast region of Alberta that have impacted many in our communities personally and weigh heavy on those working to prevent further loss. Many of our children are likewise burdened by these tragedies, but not all are communicating openly about their concerns. 

In collaboration with national specialists in the field, a recommended first step is a parent and caregiver meeting to bring all adults into a collective leadership role with our children and youth to:

  • Assess the current situation,
  • Understand the added dynamics of a worldwide pandemic on risk,
  • Educate each other on best practices for our region,
  • Discuss immediate and long-term interventions,
  • Identify pathways to local helping service for consultation and support 

To support this first important step, local police, RCMP and school jurisdictions are hosting a parent and caregiver information evening to assist families with getting the conversation started around grief, loss, suicide and mental health. This online event will take place this upcoming Wednesday, October 7th from 7:00 PM until 8:30 PM and will feature a number of guests speakers with considerable background in addressing and detecting mental health issues in children.

  1. Kevin Cameron, Executive Director, North American Center for Threat Assessment and Trauma Response Inc. M.Sc., R.S.W., B.C.E.T.S., B.C.S.C.R.
  2. Claire Petersen, MHPSD Division Psychologist R. Psych
  3. Greg Godard, PRSD Division Psychologist R. Psych

Why should I attend? Watch a short video from Prairie Rose Superintendent Roger Clarke explaining why parents should attend the online meeting.

Where: The entire meeting will be online. Parents can join easily from the comfort of their homes. A link to the online information session will be provided via email on Wednesday afternoon with further instructions to those who register. 

How do I register for this event? If you plan on attending this information session, please complete this short form: https://prrdweb.ca1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_5zooZD5VVCqy7yd
Note: You must fill out this form to receive the link for the event on Wednesday. Registration will be left open until 1:00 PM on Wednesday, October 7, 2020.

How can I submit a question? An option to submit a question is in the registration form link (above). Those who RSVP to the event will be sent a follow up email on Wednesday providing the online meeting link, how you can submit additional questions to the experts, and details for an opportunity to connect one on one with one of our Family School Liaison Workers.

This meeting is being offered in collaboration with the Medicine Hat Public School Division, Medicine Hat Catholic Board of Education, Prairie Rose Regional School Division, CAPE School, Medicine Hat Police, RCMP, Medicine Hat College and several community partners.