Wesley Mission is a longstanding and nationally recognised provider of suicide prevention services. We launched the first Lifeline in 1963 and then Wesley LifeForce in 1995 in response to the growing number of suicides across Australia. Today, we continue to educate and empower local communities, supporting people and people groups most at risk of suicide.
Established in 2007, the Wesley Suicide Prevention Networks (Wesley LifeForce Networks) program is a national community-led network of people and organisations, working together in a variety of local settings. From urban centres to remote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island communities, Wesley LifeForce Networks work to support local people and those who have lived through an experience of suicide.
Wesley LifeForce Suicide Prevention Networks program
A suicide prevention network is an evidence-based suicide prevention support that comprehensively reaches at risk populations and communities. The University of Melbourne identified that the introduction of Wesley LifeForce Networks reduced the suicide rate by seven per cent.
A Network brings together local community members and empowers them to address the specific needs of a local area through the development and delivery of grassroots suicide prevention strategies, and has been found to be one of the most effective ways of raising community awareness of the issue of suicide.
Wesley LifeForce Networks have both a whole-of-population reach and comprehensive reach into at risk populations and communities. The location of Networks are identified through Wesley’s Network Selection and Establishment Process, endorsed by Griffith University. The process is informed by Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) and AIHW’s Suicide and Self-Harm Monitoring data.
The program offers support and resources to communities, helping to prevent suicide by focusing on prevention, intervention and postvention activities. This is coupled with suicide prevention training workshops for community members and healthcare professionals.
Wesley LifeForce Networks are guided by the second principle underpinning the Living is For Everyone (LIFE) framework, a project of Australian Government Department of Health. The framework indicates that suicide prevention is a shared responsibility across the community including families and friends, professional groups, government and non-government agencies.
Wesley LifeForce gratefully acknowledges the funding provided by the Australian Government.