What is Sources of Strength?

Check out our Youth Suicide Prevention page here.

Why Sources?

Sources of Strength is an evidence-based program having undergone rigorous evaluation in past and ongoing studies. More detailed information is at https://www.sprc.org/news/connectedness-and-adolescents-part-2 and https://www.sprc.org/news/connectedness-and-adolescents-part-1  https://sourcesofstrength.org/discover/evidence.

Is my school eligible for Sources of Strength training? 

Sources of Strength training through ILP is available to public middle/junior and senior high schools. New this year, Sources of Strength Elementary will be offered to elementary schools. This program is for 3rd – 5th (or 6th when included in elementary) grades.

When can I apply for Sources of Strength training for my school?

Applications for Sources of Strength middle and high school training are typically released in late February/early March of each year, and usually due in early April. Access the application here. The elementary program application will be available in March.

When will I hear if my school has been selected for the program? 

Schools are typically notified of selection in mid-April.

If we aren't selected but still want Sources of Strength for our school, what other options do we have to get that?   

If your school  is not selected (there are limited slots available each year), there are other options. 

  1. A school may self-fund. Through ILP the cost is $3,750. This includes staff gatekeeper training, Sources of Strength, licensing and materials for year 1, and Sources of Strength booster training, licensing and materials kit for year 2.
  2. A school may seek a sponsor for funding, like a local suicide prevention group, local community club, or other organization. Through ILP the cost is also $3,750. This includes staff gatekeeper training, Sources of Strength, licensing and materials for year 1, and Sources of Strength booster training, licensing and materials kit for year 2.
  3. A school may reach out directly to Sources of Strength national for training. This training costs $5,000, includes year 1 Sources of Strength initial training, license and materials kit. Go to www.sourcesofstrength.org.

If I go directly through national Sources to get the program will Idaho Lives still support my school? 

Yes! ILP supports all Sources of Strength programs in Idaho and supports all schools with regard to suicide prevention regardless of whether they have a program or not.

What is required of my school for Sources of Strength training?

Your school will be required to:

  1. Have one staff person act as the main contact for the program.
  2. Recruit 4 – 10 (depending on school size and other guidance) personnel to act as Adult Advisors for the program. The time commitment is estimated at 4 hour per month. In some circumstances, someone other than a school staff member can be an Adult Advisor, e.g., a well-known, well-connected-to-the-school parent volunteer.
  3. Require Adult Advisors to participate in two full-day trainings in year one and one-full day training in year 2, and to assist student Peer Leaders in an ongoing manner.
  4. Require all staff to attend one 2.5-hour suicide prevention gatekeeper training, Suicide Prevention Fundamental Instruction: Schools™ (SPFI).
  5. Recruit a diverse group of students to act Sources of Strength Peer Leaders; allow ALL Peer Leaders to attend one, full-day training, and allow them to conduct Sources of Strength campaigns, presentations and other activities.
  6. Provide appropriate meeting space for all trainings. The 2.5-hour suicide prevention gatekeeper training requires a room of sufficient size to hold all staff and equipment to project a PowerPoint presentation. The two, full-day trainings require a room of sufficient size to hold all Peer Leaders, Adult Advisor and trainer sitting in open chairs in a circle configuration. The room must not have ambient or other noise and be conducive to conversation. Libraries, very large classrooms or band/orchestra/choir rooms are usually best. Cafeterias and gymnasiums are not appropriate for this training.
  7. Arrange for lunch to be brought in for both full-day trainings.
  8. Obtain active parent/guardian consent for all participating Peer Leaders.
  9. Collect and report all data required by ILP. This includes annual surveys of Adult Advisors, Peer Leaders and all staff, annual status reports and self-evaluation reports from Adult Advisors and Peer Leaders, and monthly Suicide Ideation Referral Forms from your schools mental health staff member(s), e.g., counselor, social worker, nurse. Most data collection tools are available electronically and take little time.


What does Sources of Strength training cost?

Through the ILP application process, the training is provided for free and the school receives a stipend of $2,500 to be spent on the program; $500 of the $2,500 must go directly to Peer Leader campaigns.  Outside of the ILP application process, costs vary depending on the funder/provider. See “If we are not selected…” question above for more details.

Can my entire school district apply?

Yes and no. Each school must apply individually; that is, a district cannot apply on a single application or multiple applications for their schools. However, each school in a district can apply separately and we encourage them to collaborate.

How do I get suicide prevention training for my school's staff?

Suicide prevention gatekeeper training, Suicide Prevention Fundamentals Instruction™ (SPFI) is provided to any Idaho school.  It is required of schools participating in the Sources of Strength program and available to non-participating school upon request for free. Contact ILP.


Are credits available for suicide prevention school staff training?

Two and half hours toward an in-service credit is approved by the State Department of Education for staff members who attend the 2.5-hour suicide prevention training.

What is available for elementary schools?

New in 2020! ILP will be offering Sources of Strength Elementary for Idaho elementary schools for grades 3 through 5 (or 6 is in elementary). Ten schools will be selected. These ten schools will send selected staff to Boise for a two-day, curriculum training June 3 & 4, 2020. You can find the application here. The application is due Monday, March 13, 2020 no later than 12 am PST.


How can I help my child/student who is in crisis or has made a suicide attempt.

If someone is in crisis contact the Idaho Suicide Prevention at 208-398-HELP (4357) or dial 211 and press 3; or for other assistance contact ILP at jgabert@idaholives.org or 208-999-0137.

How can I get guidance for a student who has selected suicide prevention as a school or extracurricular project to keep them safe?

It is critical that students who select suicide prevention as their project are mentored and monitored to ensure safety and accuracy of content.  Please contact ILP at jgabert@idaholives.org or 208-999-0137