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Most people considering suicide share their distress and their intent with others. Appropriate training can help us see and respond to these invitations for help.


Commonly known as ASIST, Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training provides practical training for those who want to learn how to prevent the immediate risk of suicide. ASIST workshops, which are two days in length, are intended for prospective hotline volunteers; and for emergency service workers, counselors, teachers, ministers, mental health practitioners, community volunteers, and anyone who might be concerned about family or friends.


ASIST workshops use small groups of one trainer to no more than 15 participants. ASIST uses many different teaching processes to create a practice-oriented and interactive experience. The emphasis of the workshops is on suicide first aid and on helping the person at risk stay safe and seek further help. In the workshops participants learn the following:


• Recognize the invitations to help


• Reach out and offer support


• Review the risk of suicide


• Apply a suicide intervention model


• Link people with community resources


Evaluations have shown that the workshop increases caregivers’ knowledge and confidence to respond to a person at risk of suicide, that intervention skills are retained over time, and that they are able to effectively put to use the training and skills acquired to save lives.


The workshop includes lunch on both days. If you have specific food allergies or dietary needs, please contact us in advance.


The training includes workshop materials, meals, and certification. The cost of the workshop also helps fund the training of our phone volunteers, whose commitment helps to save lives.


Alex Golovin has been as ASIST trainer since 2008. He took Crisis Line hotline training in 1985 and has been a part of crisis intervention services ever since. Alex has a strong commitment to working with youth, particularly those who are disenfranchised, disconnected, and at risk. He has spent more than 30 years in youth ministry with Protestant congregations in the United Church of Christ, American Baptist Church, and the United Methodist Church, as well as building and nurturing interfaith relationships with those who are Jewish, as well as Muslim. He now serves as a PeaceJam Specialist with the PeaceJam Foundation, an international organization whose mission statement is "to create young leaders committed to positive change in themselves, their communities, and the world through the inspiration of Nobel Peace Laureates who pass on the spirit, skills, and wisdom they embody." As a member of the South Dakota Lakota Tribe, Alex wishes he were able to spend more time working on the reservation.

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