This project aimed to evaluate the impact of Suicide Prevention Pathways' Talk Suicide Support Service, which offers a non-clinical alternative to suicide prevention in South-East Queensland for those at risk of suicide aged 15 years and over and for their support networks.

Through surveys and interviews with clients, staff and stakeholders, the evaluation examined the program's effectiveness in achieving its short- and longer-term goals to help participants stay safe by enhancing their self-awareness and increasing their resilience to manage future crises.

The evaluation found that Suicide Prevention Pathways' Talk Suicide Support model offers people experiencing suicidality a flexible, community-based service that supports them in improving their wellbeing and reducing suicidal thoughts and behaviours. We found a high level of satisfaction amongst service users, as well as the stakeholders that refer into the service.

Current and past clients reported that they found safety planning comprehensive in addition to connecting them with community supports. Upon exiting the service, they reported increased self-awareness about their suicidal thoughts and behaviours, felt more equipped to manage future issues, and presented less to hospital emergency departments. Staff believed the non-clinical setting was a strength and appreciated that they could be client-centred rather than excessively risk-averse when coaching clients.

The Talk Suicide Support model, which is based on lived experience and an outreach model of care focussing on safety, self-awareness and capacity-building, appears to fill an important service gap between crisis response, and clinical and brief interventions that are focused on de-escalating the immediate crisis. In a sector that is dominated by services that primarily focus on aftercare and postvention, Suicide Prevention Pathways provides support to those contemplating suicide prior to an attempt, as well as providing aftercare and ongoing support.

The evaluation identified the potential for the program to further increase its engagement with target at-risk groups, including men, Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander people, people from CALD backgrounds, and LGBTIQ+ people. The findings provide an evidence base demonstrating the model's effectiveness which Suicide Prevention Pathways will share with the sector to inform best practices in suicide prevention support.


Talk Suicide Support: Evaluating the outcomes of a community-based suicide prevention model

Brochure summary of findings

It takes a village to prevent suicide: An Impact Summary of the Talk Suicide Support Service


Suicide Prevention Pathways

Project team
  • Ms Shana Challenor - Chief Executive Officer, Suicide Preventions Pathways
  • Dr Sera Harris - School of Allied Health, ACU
  • Dr Jill Cox, ACU Engagement
  • Ms Vivien Cinque, ACU Engagement

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