Suicide prevention: Get real about it GRASP tells youth

GRASP is a three day workshop that helps youth build coping skills for dealing with personal crises and helping others

Cowichan Neighborhood House is hosting the Vancouver Island Crisis Society’s GRASP program, free to youth (12-18).

GRASP is a three day workshop that helps youth build coping skills for dealing with personal crises and helping others. It features “SirReal”, a hip hop artist who teaches youth how to rap and cope with issues.

Young people often turn to their peers in times of difficulty and are aware of school dynamics about which school staff may not be cognizant. The program was developed for Peer Gatekeeper training, providing youth with the skills needed to recognize and identify students at risk and where they can turn for help.

It boosts self confidence, problem solving, community resource knowledge, knowledge of school district protocols, critical thinking, awareness of personal biases, resilience, suicide awareness and response in students selected to take the program.

Through a series of games, interactive discussion, group activity, written work, and role play, youth learn:

• Active listening skills

• The impact of  social and cultural biases on listening and helping

• Why difficult situations can be turning points for the better

• The power of our choices

• How to respectfully communicate in an open and direct manner

• The differences between healthy and unhealthy relationships

• How to recognize manipulation

• When to set boundaries

• How to set boundaries

• Coping with crisis

• Suicide awareness, the importance of reaching out, and never keeping suicide a secret

• Community resource information

If you want to find out more about GRASP from the perspective of youth who have taken the program, have a look at the GRASP video at vicrisis.ca/existing/grasp.