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The Building bridges project aimed to use the experience and knowledge of the Yarrabah community in Queensland as a model for other Indigenous communities for the establishment of effective and sustainable community-based approaches to building resilience, reducing suicide risk exposure, and reducing self-harm.
Several empowerment strategies had been developed in Yarrabah following a cluster of suicides in the 1990s (the Yaba Bimbie Men's Group, the Family well being empowerment program and the Life Promotion Officer). Under the Building bridges project, these strategies were employed within the communities of Hope Vale, Kowanyama, and Dalby in Queensland. Sharing of knowledge through formal events and informal communication provided a means by which the knowledge, skills, and experience of each community was strengthened.
The Building bridges project was funded by the National suicide prevention strategy (NSPS) and auspiced by the Australasian Centre for Rural and Remote Mental Health (formerly the Centre for Rural and Remote Mental Health, Queensland).
Abstract adapted from the Australasian Centre for Rural and Remote Mental Health
Australasian Centre for Rural and Remote Mental Health
PO Box 2362
Cairns Qld 4870
Ph: 1300 515 951
This report describes the implementation and findings of a community based suicide prevention initiative in several Queensland Indigenous communities. The project used the knowledge and experience of the Indigenous community in Yarrabah as a model for other communities for the establishment of effective and sustainable community based approaches to build resilience, reduce suicide risk exposure and reduce self-harm. Through knowledge sharing, the skills, knowledge and experience of each community was strengthened.
The report documents the implementation of this project and discusses the various challenges encountered. This may have valuable implications for future Indigenous community based suicide prevention programs using an empowerment approach.
Australian Indigenous HealthInfoNet abstract