HILL AIR FORCE BASE, Utah - Local Army Reservists completed a five-day Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training workshop here Jan. 6-10.
Soldiers and civilian employees from the Salt Lake City-based 76th Operational Response Command teamed with servicemembers from U.S. Army Reserve Legal Command, 200th Military Police Company, 416th Theater Engineer Command and 152nd Theater Information Operations Group attended to become certified ASIST trainers for their respective commands.
"We need just as many people trained in ASIST as there are trained in CPR. It is just as important,' said Brady Olsen, the 76th ORC Suicide Prevention Program manager, who organized the training.
Instructors from LivingWorks, the Canadian company that developed ASIST training, first gives the students the basic suicide prevention course which covers the entire process on how to prevent suicide by studying the actions, thoughts, feelings, events and physical aspects which can contribute to someone having suicidal thoughts.
The ASIST training program is superior because it goes beyond just awareness it gives attendees the tools to be able to actually assist somebody to choose life, said Lt. Col. Bruce Sidebotham, the 76th's command chaplain.
The training was divided into two parts, with the first two days focused on receiving the first-hand experience going through the basic ASIST training.
Upon completion, next three days shifted focus to training the students to become trainers. Students were given the tools needed and broken down into small groups to teach their peers the information they had just learned.
The advantage of training the trainer is that the trainers from the military environment can take the training and make it fit into the military world, said Dave Biblow, a LivingWorks team leader.
At the end of the five days, 18 students signed an agreement with LivingWorks to be registered ASIST trainers.