Supporting communities to reduce the risk of suicide
The 2010 Election commitment Mental health: taking action to tackle suicide (TATS) package forms part of the Australian Government's commitment to mental health reform.
Under the TATS package the Australian Government committed $30.2 million funding over four years commencing 2011-12 for the Supporting communities to reduce the risk of suicide initiative to support community-led suicide prevention activities - targeted at groups and communities which are at high risk of suicide, including Indigenous people, men, gay, lesbian and bisexual people, and families recently bereaved by suicide. Six million dollars of this funding has been quarantined for activity that is specific to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and their communities who are at risk of suicide.
The principles recommended for projects should:
- be grounded in community, owned by the community, based on community needs and accountable to the community
- be based on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander definitions of health incorporating spirituality, culture and healing
- be sustainable both in terms of building community capacity and in terms of not being one-off; they must endure until the community is empowered (e.g., provide Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander workforces and community members with tools for awareness, early identification, and for responding to self-harm issues within the community)
- work in genuine partnerships with local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander stakeholders and other providers to support and enhance existing local measures; funding applications need to demonstrate a record of genuine community and stakeholder/provider consultations and a track record of community empowerment
- be delivered in a safe manner
- be built on learnings, try new and innovative approaches, share learnings, and improve the evidence base
- share learnings and these should be promoted in other communities.
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