Embedding Alternatives to Suicide (Alt2Sui) Project
responsibility to, not for or over people
About the Embedding Alternatives to Suicide (Alt2Su) Project:
Throughout 2022 and 2023 LELAN is bringing the Alternatives to Suicide approach to South Australia. Alternatives to Suicide was developed by the Wildflower Alliance (formerly the Western Mass Recovery Learning Community) in the US. Alternatives to Suicide peer-led community-based groups centre mutual connection and meaning making around suicide distress, thoughts and experiences. They offer non-clinical spaces where people can be honest about their experiences without fear of forced treatment, other forms of coercion, or risk assessment that shuts conversation down.
Whilst the focus of the project is to support the establishment and ongoing running of Alternatives to Suicide groups, another core component is using this model as evidence that community based lived experience-led initiatives work and can be scaled. Five ‘pilot’ groups targeting different population groups will be part of the formal evaluation and will be the first groups to form. Additional groups will emerge from this work and inform the conceptualisation and design of future lived experience-led alternatives.
The Alternatives to Suicide Groups Charter defines the principles and values of support groups using the Alternatives to Suicide approach: Responsibility to – and not for or over; Consent and choice; Responses to injustice; and Healing in communities.
You can read more from an early evaluation of the Alt2Su groups in Western Australia here.
[This project is made possible by financial support from Wellbeing SA, Country SA PHN and Adelaide PHN – including monetary contribution from LELAN].
More about the Alternatives to Suicide Approach:
How you can learn more and get involved:
Attend a Community Forum (online)
Community Forums provide an opportunity to learn more about the Alt2Su approach, why it is necessary and opportunities for being involved, as well as hear from people who have been facilitating groups for some time. The next session is being held Thursday September 1st, 12-1pm. You can register here.
Attend a Sector Forum (online)
The Sector Forum provides an opportunity for service providers – including peer workers, team leaders and executive – to learn more about the Alt2Su approach, opportunities for partnership and how they can support their organisation and/or peer workforce to be involved. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org to organise a time to meet with the LELAN team about how your organisation can be involved.
Attend a Training Session to Develop Skills for Facilitating Peer Groups (online)
We know the power of peers supporting peers, whether that is specific to experiences of suicide distress and crisis or not. This session will help people to develop skills for facilitating peer groups generally and consider what will help them to do that within their own contexts, resources and interest areas (whether you continue to explore Alt2Su group facilitation or not). New dates will be advertised here and through our newsletter when they are released.
Attend an Information Session about Being an Alt2Su Group Peer Facilitator (online)
This session provides the opportunity to learn more about what facilitating an Alt2Su group looks like and the support that LELAN can provide. It is also a great opportunity for asking questions and learning how you can be involved. The next session is being held Thursday September 1st, 1-2pm. You can register here.
Attend the 3-Day Alt2Su Peer Group Facilitator Training (in-person)
People interested in being Alt2Su Peer Facilitators will need to go through an Expression of Interest process for this fully funded training. An initial training was delivered in late-May 2022. Additional 3-day Facilitator Training sessions are planned for September 2022 and February/March 2023. Expressions of Interest (EOI) for becoming an Alt2Su Peer Group Facilitator and attending training September 20th-22nd 2022 are now open. You can complete the EOI form here. Please email email@example.com if you have further questions.
Frequently asked questions:
Who is responsible for running the Alt2Su Peer Group Facilitator training?
The SA Lived Experience Leadership & Advocacy Network (LELAN) is responsible for bringing the Alternatives to Suicide approach systematically to South Australia. The three-day Alt2Su Peer Group Facilitator Training will be delivered by our friends Leo and Emery from WA. Leo and Emery have been facilitating Alt2Su for the past several years in Western Australia. More recently they have been training Alt2Su Peer Group Facilitators, providing supervision and advising organisations across a number of states to expand its reach.
Who is eligible for the Alt2Su Peer Group Facilitator training for?
Priority for the Alt2Su Peer Group Facilitator training in late-May will be given to people and communities participating in the evaluation and ‘pilot’ groups for the Alt2Su project in South Australia. Additional 3-day Alt2Su Peer group Facilitator training sessions with more open eligibility are scheduled for September 2022 and February/March 2023.
Please email firstname.lastname@example.org to find out about when we will be accepting Expressions of Interest from people wanting to facilitate Alt2Su groups.
Is the training online or face-to-face?
The training is face-to-face and will be held in a CBD location.
How much does the training cost?
Participants will not be reimbursed for attending the training but course costs and catering are covered. People selected to be Alt2Su Peer Group Facilitators not financially supported by a community group or organisation will have their accomodation and travel costs provided by LELAN.
What strategies are there to make it an accessible and safe (enough) learning environment?
Creating trauma-informed, safe-enough and inclusive spaces is an important consideration for all of LELAN’s work and how we do things. Participants are given the opportunity to discuss specific needs and preferences through the expression of interest process.