Detailed Agenda

This agenda provides suggested timings for a two-hour session, the minimum time recommended for presenting the information and providing time for the activities. However, you may want more time to offer the training and could extend the session to two and a half or even three hours to allow more time for discussion, debriefs, and short breaks, and to give participants more time to work through the scenarios at the end. Some facilitators may want to offer this training over two sessions. While the training is adaptable, we recommend that you include the sections on marginalized groups, as it is important to maintain the integrity of diversity of voice in this resource.

Activity Time

  • Welcome and Territory Acknowledgement
  • Introductions and Check In
  • Goals and Objectives
  • Practical Information
  • Self-Care When Talking About Suicide
  • Activity: Breathing Exercise
  • Group Guidelines
  • Reflection: How Confident Do You Feel?
15 min
Why We Need to Talk About Suicide

  • Video: Live Through This
  • Activity: Myths and Commonly Misunderstood Ideas
  • Looking at Statistics
  • Risk Factors and Protective Factors
  • Marginalized Groups
  • Discussion
15 min
Exploring Our Own Feelings About Suicide

  • Feelings and Attitudes
  • Activity: What Questions and Worries Do You Have?
  • What We Need to Consider Before a Difficult Conversation
15 min
Observing and Recognizing the Signs

  • Signs That Someone Is Contemplating Suicide (Thoughts, Feelings, Statements, Physical Signs, Actions, and Stressful Events or Loss)
  • Suicide Contagion
15 min

  • What Do People Need?
  • Brené Brown Video
  • Starting the Conversation
  • Scenario Walk-Through
  • Ask Directly and Clearly
  • Scenario Walk-Through
  • What To Keep in Mind When Talking About Suicide
15 min

  • Referring to Resources
  • Provincial Mental Health and Crisis Lines
  • Campus Resources
  • If You’re Concerned About a Student’s Immediate Safety
  • When You Are Unsure What to Do
  • If a Student Won’t See a Counsellor or Seek Help
  • Privacy
  • Responding on Social Media?
  • Key Points to Remember When Talking to Someone About Suicide
  • What Helps People Recover?
10 min
Practice Scenarios

  • Activity: Practice Scenarios (five to choose from)
  • Group Debrief
20 min
Maintaining Boundaries and Closing the Session

  • Maintaining Boundaries
  • Reflection: How Confident Do You Feel?
  • Reflection, Questions, and Comments
10 min


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Let’s Talk About Suicide: Raising Awareness and Supporting Students Copyright © 2021 by Dawn Schell; Jewell Gillies; Barbara Johnston; and Liz Warwick is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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