Suicide Prevention Program Available to Community Members Working with Youth

January 12, 2023, 10:10 am | Demi Johnson

Preteen girl talking to teacher in school by Monkey Business/, Iowa – According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, suicide is the second leading cause of death for youth and young adults between the ages of 10 and 34. In response, Iowa State University Extension and Outreach is continuing to offer virtual and in-person “Question. Persuade. Refer.” trainings, also known as QPR.

People trained in QPR learn how to recognize the warning signs of a suicide crisis and how to question, persuade and refer someone to help.

“Everyone has a role to play in suicide prevention and mental health awareness. Many people think that our formal support networks such as physicians, pastors, police officers and therapists are those who will help us in a mental health crisis, and that’s true. However, it’s those in our most intimate inner circles who are going to be the first to recognize our distress,” said Demi Johnson, behavioral health program specialist with ISU Extension and Outreach. “The more people who are trained in recognizing signs and symptoms of mental illness and know what resources are available, the sooner we can get our friends and family the help that they need.”

ISU Extension and Outreach is offering QPR on Jan. 30 from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the ISU Extension and Outreach Wright County office, 2302 Madison Ave., Suite B, Clarion. Additional virtual programs will be offered throughout January and February as well. Pre-registration is required for all programs. To register, go to The USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture, award #2020-70028-32728, funds this program.

For more information, contact Demi Johnson at .

Other resources

Iowa Concern, offered by ISU Extension and Outreach, provides confidential access to stress counselors and an attorney for legal education, as well as information and referral services for a wide variety of topics. With a toll-free phone number, live chat capabilities and a website, Iowa Concern services are available 24 hours a day, seven days per week at no charge. To reach Iowa Concern, call 800-447-1985; language interpretation services are available. Or visit the website,, to live chat with a stress counselor one-on-one in a secure environment. Or email an expert regarding legal, finance, stress, or crisis and disaster issues.

Project Recovery Iowa offers a variety of services to anyone affected by recent local disasters and the COVID-19 pandemic. Virtual counselors and consultants provide counseling, family finance consultation, farm financial consultation, referral information and help finding resources for any Iowan seeking personal support. Iowans of all ages may join groups online for activities and learn creative strategies for coping with the effects of the pandemic. To request support, go to

Photo credit: Monkey Business/

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