1 in 5 adolescents have a diagnosable mental health disorder.


Approximately 1/3 of mood disorders, such as depression, first emerge during adolescence.


14.2% of high school students and 10.5% of middle school students in the St. Louis area have seriously considered suicide within the last year. (2016 YRBS)


80% of youth with mental illness are not identified and do not receive any mental health services.


This is why the Signs of Suicide® (SOS) program is so important. SOS® is an evidence-based suicide prevention program for students in grades 6-12, faculty, and parents. SOS® has been shown to reduce suicide by up to 64% in adolescents through education and a brief screening. *All student presentations include a screening for depression and student-responses to ask to speak with a counselor*

Middle School Programs

Time to ACT®: SOS® Middle School

Students learn warning signs and symptoms of depression and suicide, ACT® (Acknowledge, Care, Tell), and have the opportunity to speak with a counselor. The interactive presentation includes a PowerPoint, video, brief screening, student response slips, and a review of mental health resources.
Time to ACT®: SOS® Signs of Suicide Middle School Program

EYES® – Every Year, Every Student

EYES® presentations (offered after students receive the Time to ACT®: SOS® Middle School presentation) are follow up presentations similar to SOS® with an ACT® review, discussion of this year’s topic, and a hands-on activity. Each year builds on the last as our presenters reinforce previous learning while incorporating new materials and activities specific to the grade level. All presentations incorporate a screening and response slips that are reviewed with a counselor after each presentation. EYES® allows suicide prevention to be included in student learning on a yearly basis.

  •  6th grade: Bully Free

  • 7th grade: Peer Pressure

  • 8th grade: Self-Injury

I thought the presentation was good because it gave me a deeper understanding of what we were learning.
— 6th grade student

High School Programs

Friends for Life: SOS® High School

Transitioning to high school can be a difficult time. The SOS® High school presentation provides a new, older perspective on mental illness as it may occur in high school students. Students review the importance of continuing the conversation though high school and the tools needed to recognize the signs and symptoms of depression and suicide and how to get help. The interactive presentation includes a PowerPoint, video, brief screening, student response slips, and a review of mental health resources.
SOS Friends for Life: Preventing Teen Suicide Trailer

Signs of Self-Injury®

Students learn about warning signs and risk factors for self-injury, with an emphasis on healthy coping skills and the importance of staying mentally and physically healthy. This is a chance for students to learn how to make a difference for themselves and others with the signature ACT® method that is reviewed during the presentation. The presentation also includes a screening and student-response slips.

Healthy Coping Skills

Students are introduced to what is healthy and unhealthy coping and how stress can both debilitate and motivate us. Positive coping behaviors can relieve stress, anxiety and depression. Participants will distinguish between stress and trauma and understand how two different sets of skills are needed to effectively manage both. (This program is not currently covered by grant funding, contact us to find out more about scheduling this presentation.)

SOS® Second ACT: Preparing for Life Beyond High School

Transitioning to life after high school can be incredibly challenging and stressful. The SOS® Second ACT program addresses these stressors and outlines the signs and symptoms of depression and suicide and the importance of knowing resources on a college campus or in the workforce. The presentation will also include a screening and student-response slips.

It had a lot of great information and facts and showed the real side. As someone who’s been through all of this stuff, I know it can help someone.
— 12th Grade Student

Educators and Parents

SOS® Training Trusted Adults

This training educates parents and school staff about the signs and symptoms of adolescent depression and suicide so they are able to recognize and ACT® in order to help an adolescent who is struggling. The program includes content similar to the SOS® student program but also dives deeper into the prevalence of mental health issues, high risk groups, and teaches adults how to respond confidently and with care when a child brings a concern about themselves or someone they know. By using common language from the SOS® student program, adults leave the presentation with a deeper understanding of mental health and how to help the youth they interact with most. The program can be offered to parents, faculty and staff members, and community organizations.

In the 2017-18 school year:

  • 13.2% (3,969) out of 30,175

    students asked for help after an SOS® presentation.

  • 85.6%  

    of students reported an increase in knowledge on mental health.

  • 87.9%

    of students reported an increase in life skills and seeking help for themselves or a friend.

Thank you, this is a vital piece of knowledge all students, teachers and school employees need to protect our future!
— Teacher

Colleen Pace, SOS® Manager


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