This project builds the capacity of four TCC subregions, located in the Interior region of Alaska, to prevent suicide and promote mental health among youth and young adults age 10-24 through extensive outreach, engagement, community involvement, and training in evidence-based strategies.
Population to be Served: The Zhiiniidzelt’aey project, will serve four TCC subregions: Upper Tanana Subregion, Yukon Flats Subregion, Yukon Tanana Subregion, and the Yukon Koyukuk Subregion, which together include 29 tribal communities. The total population of the geographic catchment area is 6,222 and the population of youth and young adults age 10-24 in the geographic catchment area is 1,275. The population of focus is individuals age 10-24. This project will directly serve approximately 75% of the individuals between the age 10-24 (956 individuals) and will train and support 300 adults over the entire five-year project period.
Strategies/Interventions: The Zhiiniidzelt’aey project will establish and support subregional Crisis and Wellness Response Teams to respond to and assist youth at risk of suicide; develop culturally-based uniform procedures to identify and assist youth at risk of suicide, respond to crises, provide postvention, reduce access to means, and increase resources for communities to address suicide; develop and implement trainings and assist youth at risk of suicide, respond to crises, and provide postvention; hold subregional healing ceremonies to promote a sense of belonging and foster supportive relationships; develop and implement youth prevention activities to identify and assist youth at risk of suicide; provide activities at subregional wellness camps for youth and adults; and to development and implement a case management program to ensure that at-risk youth access behavioral health services and families receive support.
Project Goals and Measurable Objectives: The overarching goal of this project is to increase the number of youth and young adults at risk of suicide who are referred and admitted to behavioral health services. To meet this goal, this project will focus on two goals: 1) To increase the capacity of tribal communities to identify, prevent, and respond to youth suicide and 2) To increase access of youth ages 10 to 24 to behavioral health services. Our objectives include training four subregional Crisis and Wellness Response Teams to implement culturally-based uniform procedures; training tribal leaders in the geographic catchment area (tribal council members, tribal employees, school personnel, and behavioral health and primary care providers; approximately 300 individuals) to identify and respond to suicide warning signs among youth ages 10 to 24; to engage youth (approximately 956 individuals) ages 10 to 24 in suicide prevention and intervention activities; to engage youth (approximately 200 individuals) referred for suicide ideation or risky behaviors will have received case management services to improve their access to and use of behavioral health services; and to engage youth (approximately 956 individuals) in early intervention and assessment services.