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North Shore Temple Emanuel

a Progressive Jewish Congregation

Jewish Suicide Prevention Strategy

What is it?

In response to a number of suicides within the Jewish community, NSW’s first ever Jewish Suicide Prevention Strategy has been established. This project, which is being supported by funding from The Jewish Communal Appeal (JCA) aims to raise awareness, educate and empower members of the community.  This vital project is guided by the LifeSpan Framework developed by the Black Dog Institute’s WHOLE COMMUNITY APPROACH to suicide prevention. 

What will be done to prevent suicide and raise awareness?

Over a 2 year time frame, the project will roll out FREE Mental Health First Aid and suicide prevention trainings to gatekeepers and general community members, facilitate community events and presentations, grow a network to champion the message of suicide prevention and awareness, strengthen partnerships and create an integrated and co-ordinated response to suicide through culturally appropriate resources and programs. 

Who is involved in developing Strategy?

A Steering Committee has been established in partnership with members from Jewish specific emergency and community service organisations, schools, health professionals and Rabbis as well as specialist services such as the Black Dog Institute.  JewishCare is a member of Suicide Prevention Australia who will provide ongoing strategic guidance and support.

When was it launched?

The Jewish Suicide Prevention Strategy was officially launched on World Suicide Prevention Day on Sunday September 10, 2017 held in conjunction with the annual Eastern Suburbs Suicide Prevention Network awareness walk. MP Julian Leeser spoke at the launch about the importance of initiatives such as this which build community capacity and affirms that suicide prevention is a shared responsibility. 

If you are interested in attending Mental Health First Aid courses or Suicide Prevention Training please contact familyandfriends@jewishcare.com.au 


Jewish Suicide Prevention Strategy

Jewish Suicide Prevention Crisis Card


Jewish Suicide Prevention Strategy partners:

Australian Zionist Youth Council
Black Dog Institute – LifeSpan Framework
Eastern Suburbs Suicide Prevention Network
Emanuel School
Emanuel Synagogue
Jewish House
Kesser Torah College
Masada College
Moriah College 
National Council of Jewish Women of Australia (NSW)
North Shore Temple Emanuel
NSW Jewish Board of Deputies
Our Big Kitchen
Rabbinical Council of NSW
Shalom College
Suicide Prevention Australia

Wolper Jewish Hospital Health Foundation

If you or someone you know needs immediate assistance please call 000 or Hatzolah on 9371 2222 or the below contacts.  
Crisis contacts:
Lifeline: 13 11 14
Jewish House 24/7 Crisis Line: 1300 544 357 
Suicide Call Back Service: 1300 659 467

General Support: 
Mental Health Line: 1800 011 511
JewishCare’s Mental Health & Wellbeing team: 1300 133 660
beyondblue: 1300 22 4636

Initiative Update - September 2018

At the start of the new year, it seems appropriate to review what our Jewish communities have achieved by working together in this sensitive, but essential, area that affects all our lives.

JewishCare and the steering committee, which includes myself and Rabbi Nicole, have been very busy with putting together training strategies, with the aim of developing resilience within all the Jewish communities in Sydney and raising awareness of the fact that there is help available if needed.

So far: 
• We are nearly one year into the Strategy and have gained great momentum. We received funding from Wolper Jewish Hospital Health Foundation to continue running the Mental Health First Aid Trainings and Suicide Prevention Training free to community members. Since October last year, the JSPS has run nine training seminars for members of the community.
• We were part of the National Suicide Prevention Conference in Adelaide and were one of the few Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) specific Suicide Prevention Networks.
• In August, the first Older Persons Mental Health First Aid Training was run with nearly 20 attendees and will be running again in October. Older Persons MHFA training now complements the existing Youth and Standard Mental Health First Aid Trainings.
• The 'Suicide Impacting Me' monthly support group is going strong with good attendance rates.
• Mindframe media training was held at JewishCare on August 17 with over 35 attendees, which gave us insight into how the use of thoughtless words can seriously impact on people who are affected by suicide.
• JewishCare ran a men's Suicide Prevention Training session on R U OK? Day on Thursday 13th September.
• On Sunday 16 September, there was the Eastern Suburbs Suicide Prevention Network (ESSPN) Annual Walk for Life. 
• JSPS developed a Client Suicide and Self Harm Policy, as well as Risk Assessment forms based on best practice guidelines.
• JSPS has developed a partnership with the Australian Jewish News, which is a strong supporter of the initiative.
• We have been going to various committee member organisations and presenting about the JSPS and ways to work together. 

So, as you can see a lot has happened this year. If you have any ideas or would like to become more involved with Suicide Prevention, please contact me on 0403 198 844. If reading this  has raised any issues for you, please ring Lifeline on 13 11 13. 

Sue Michaels

Advocate for Jewish Suicide Prevention Strategy

Upcoming Events

One of the key initiatives of the Jewish Suicide Prevention Strategy is to run FREE Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) training and Suicide Prevention Training to community members.

Please see upcoming trainings below.




NSTE Discussion Meet-Up - 12 May 2018

A group of us met at NSTE last Saturday afternoon to discuss the Jewish Suicide Prevention Strategy.  We were fortunate to have Renata Ieremias from Jewish Care, Susan Michaels, Rabbi Nicole and Cathy Braun leading the group.

Rabbi Nicole explained the way Jewish attitudes have (thankfully) changed over the past 20 years and that these changes are across all the communities.

Renata and Susan explained what the Strategy is, why it came about and how it will be assessed over the next two years. Cathy and Renata brought their counselling background into the meeting with some very meaningful insights surrounding the grieving process.  There was much discussion about the needs of the community and many of these ideas will be taken back to the JSPS steering committee for development.

We concluded with a beautiful havdalah ceremony in the sanctuary.

There will be several mental health first aid courses run by Jewish Care to help us recognise when someone is in distress and find the words to assist them.  If you are interested in participating in one of these courses, please contact Jewish Care on familyandfriends@jewishcare.com.au


Upcoming Events

Tue, 25 June 2024 19 Sivan 5784