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Learn how to save lives with this free suicide-prevention training

Anyone interested in learning how to spot signs of suicide and intervene to save lives can attend free Stand Up to Suicide training sessions this month.

Montgomery County Alcohol, Drug Addiction & Mental Health Services is joining 13 other county mental health agencies, including Warren, Greene and Clark, to hold the training during Suicide Prevention Month.

Stand Up to Suicide uses a prevention technique called question, persuade and refer, or QPR. During a free 90-minute training, attendees learn the skills to recognize and intervene when someone might be thinking of suicide.

RELATED: How Dayton can stop increase in teen suicides

“It’s 90 minutes that will help you help someone else,” said Ann Stevens, public information coordinator for ADAMHS. “A lot of times people don’t know what to say. You’re concerned but you’re not sure what to do.”

The training teaches how to ask pertinent questions, how to recognize the early warning signs of suicide, how to offer hope and how to get someone the proper care to save a life, she said.

There were 405 suicide deaths between 2012 and 2016 in Montgomery County. Suicide deaths in Ohio have increased by 24 percent over the past decade.

“Suicide doesn’t discriminate and is often preventable,” ADAMHS Executive Director Helen Jones-Kelley said. “Traumatic events like the Memorial Day tornadoes or the Oregon District mass shooting can bring thoughts of suicide.”

RELATED: Why youth mental health is one of the Miami Valley’s biggest issues

The goal of Stand Up to Suicide is to increase public awareness of suicide and to have as many people as possible trained in QPR so that it becomes as commonplace as using CPR to save lives.

ADAMHS began teaching the program in 2016 and has 10 certified instructors.

Free sessions this month are available 9 to 11 a.m. Friday, Sept. 20; Tuesday, Sept. 24, and Friday, Sept. 27, at the ADAMHS office, 409 E. Monument Ave. in Dayton, as well as 2 to 4 p.m. Monday, Sept. 30.

RELATED: What schools are doing to improve student mental health

To register for any of the remaining free scheduled events, visit mcadamhs.org/trainings_and_events and click on Stand up to Suicide.

Groups or employers can also request a session at their location by visiting mcadamhs.org or visit Stand Up to Suicide for more information.

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