• 23-OCT-2013

The Trevor Project Launches Campaign Encouraging Youth to "Ask for Help" in Time of Crisis

Suicide is the second leading cause of death among American youth. Building on the momentum generated by National Suicide Prevention Month in September, The Trevor Project has launched Ask for Help a teen and young adult-focused campaign to empower youth in crisis to "Ask for Help.

Studies show that youth who are considering suicide or other self-harming behaviors often do not seek professional help. However, the majority of young people studied do seek help from people they know and trust, especially peers.i

The Trevor Project's new PSA campaign promotes strengthening this kind of positive social connectedness, a known protective factor to prevent suicide and other high-risk behaviors, to make it easier for an at-risk individual to reach out for and receive help in times of crisis.

Stigma surrounding mental health and illness can be paralyzing, especially for young people. Add to that the simple barriers of access to transportation to get needed care, or laws that that vary by state to limit a young person's access to confidential counseling services, and it is no surprise that less than two-thirds (61 percent) of youth who need mental health care actually receive it.ii When a young person is lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or questioning, the stigma they face and barriers to access care increase, especially as these youth tend to face high rates of family and community rejection.

Developed by Avant Gérard, "Ask for Help" PSAs use empowering first-person accounts of youth overcoming obstacles by reaching out to friends, teachers, parents or counselors for help. The 39 pieces are available for television and radio broadcast, as well as print, billboard, web banner and online video distribution at http://inr.synapticdigital.com/TheTrevorProject/PSA

Founded in 1998 by the creators of the Academy Award®-winning short film TREVOR, The Trevor Project is the leading national organization providing crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning (LGBTQ) young people ages 13-24. Every day, The Trevor Project saves young lives through its accredited, free and confidential phone, instant message and text messaging crisis intervention services. A leader and innovator in suicide prevention, The Trevor Project offers the largest safe social networking community for LGBTQ youth, best practice suicide prevention educational trainings, resources for youth and adults, and advocacy initiatives. Learn more at TheTrevorProject.org.


Synaptic Digital: Dan Schwartzberg, Dan.Schwartzberg@synapticdigital.com, 212-414-5670

iMichelmore L, Hindley P. Suicide Life Threat Behav. 2012 Oct;42(5):507-24. doi: 10.1111/j.1943-278X.2012.00108.x. Epub 2012 Aug 13. Review. PMID: 22889130
iiChild and Adolescent Health Measurement Initiative. 2011 National Survey of Children's Health, Data Resource Center for Child and Adolescent Health website. Retrieved June 2013.