Riverside City College Awarded $306,000 Grant for Suicide Prevention

Oct 31

Riverside City College (RCC) is proud to announce the receipt of a three-year, $306,000 grant from the Garrett Lee Smith Memorial Act, emphasizing the college's dedication to suicide prevention. This marks RCC's second time being honored, having previously received this grant in 2019.

Administered by the Suicide Prevention Branch within the Center for Mental Health Services, a division of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), this grant solidifies RCC's dedication to a comprehensive public health approach aimed at suicide prevention.

The grant empowers Riverside City College to establish a strategic infrastructure, including:

  • Training Key Gatekeeper Staff: Equip designated personnel with specialized training to assist students in crisis.
  • Establishing a Peer-to-Peer Program: Create a support system for students to connect with peers for guidance and support.
  • Providing Prevention Education Events: Host initiatives to raise awareness and educate the community about mental health.
  • Designing a Crisis Intervention Plan: Develop a structured crisis management plan to facilitate referrals to on-campus programs and community resources.

These initiatives are of paramount importance, given national statistics, including findings from the Active Minds organization, which emphasize that suicide stands as the second leading cause of death among students. Alarmingly, 67 percent of college students admit to initially confiding in a friend about their suicidal thoughts before seeking professional assistance.

Riverside City College's diverse student population reflects the socio-economic and ethnic diversity of the region it serves, which faces higher poverty rates (16 percent of the total population and 23.4 percent of children) and low socio-economic mobility (7 percent), contributing to higher levels of daily stress that can lead to physical and mental health issues.

Riverside City College remains steadfast in its mission to address the mental health needs of its diverse student population, emphasizing a resolute focus on suicide prevention and support services.