The Jonathan Foundation is aligning with the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention in PROJECT 2025. The Project 2025 campaign aims to reduce the rate of suicide by 20 percent by the year 2025.
Despite the fact that more is being done today to prevent suicide than at any other time in history, the rate of suicide continues to rise in the United States. Led by the largest suicide prevention organization in the United States, with guidance from the top minds in the field and dynamic data modeling, the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention has determined the programs, policies and interventions that will prevent as many suicides as possible. Project 2025 is the collaborative effort to implement and scale these strategies nationwide.
— American Foundation for Suicide Prevention 2021
Suicide has been the 2nd leading cause of death for young people ages 15-24 years old, increasing since 2007. A few sobering statistics sharpen the understanding of the divide between hurting people and practical immediate care.
- 83% deaths by suicide were seen by healthcare professional in the last year. Most of those who died by suicide did not have an identified mental health diagnosis.
- 50% of people who successfully completed suicide had visited their primary care provider in the month preceding their death.
- 40% of these people had an emergency department visit without a mental health diagnosis.
Research has shown that 95% of individuals who attempt suicide, when provided with appropriate suicide safe care, never attempt suicide again. The gold standard of healthcare and mental health services is to use evidence-based interventions that are standardized and replicable in our community. AFSP and Project 2025 issues calls for effective suicide prevention, intervention and post-vention best practices for key access areas of the healthcare and service continuum.
The National Strategy for Suicide Prevention (National Strategy) released by the U.S. Surgeon General and the Action Alliance, presents 13 goals and 60 objectives for suicide prevention. This national call describes the role that each of us can play in preventing suicide and reducing its impact on individuals, families, and communities. The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention’s Project 2025 seeks to reduce the national suicide rate by 20% by 2025 by targeting key opportunity areas that have been identified in the national research. The COVID pandemic has brought heightened awareness to this need and can be the catalyst for facilitating the widespread adoption of evidenced-based suicide risk reduction in our counseling community, primary care centers, emergency departments, schools and colleges, churches, and first responder services.
Three mothers, united by the loss of their sons and their determination to make a difference are stepping out to bring Project 2025 suicide awareness and prevention campaign to the region. The mothers, Lynn Bulloch who lost her son Jonathan Smith in 2011, Helen George who lost her son Will George in 2017, and Gracelyn Elmendorf, who lost her son Robert Duffee in 2003 are working through The Jonathan Foundation, to align with the work of the National Action Alliance, the Zero Suicide Initiative, and the American Foundation of Suicide Prevention in this Call to Action to our health and community care systems in South Carolina to step up and make care “Suicide Safe.”
The Jonathan Foundation is launching three new strategic community awareness campaigns in support of PROJECT 2025 over this next year:
- The Will George Project which will advocate for the adoption of risk assessment screening in counseling, primary care centers, and emergency departments.
- The Robert Duffee Project will advocate for the adoption of screening in educational settings- primarily middle school, high school and colleges.
- The Jonathan Smith Project will advocate for proper mental health crisis intervention training for all first responders- EMS and Police.
Just as CPR is life-saving intervention for the cardiac patient, QPR (question, persuade, refer) is life-saving intervention for the suicidal patient. These 3 key elements align very closely to QPR and represent the national standard for effective suicide prevention.
Ask a Question, Save a Life, Every Life Matters
Join the AFSP and TJF by taking the pledge to Be That Friend and propel our mission to reduce the rate of youth-suicides in our communities and across the country!