People with lived experience.. 

are individuals who have experienced a suicide attempt, suicidal thoughts and feelings, or a suicide loss. 

“We are experts by experience—people who have lived with mental health conditions, people who've been suicidal, people who are trauma survivors. That is just as valuable as the kind of academic credentials that people earn. And it’s incredibly important that we work together as partners.” -Leah Harris, MA


Engaging People with Lived Experience 

Visit the SPRC page on Engaging People with Lived Experience to learn why it's important, what you can do, and explore additional resources. 

Core Values for Supporting People with Lived Experience 

All activities designed to help attempt survivors, or anyone who has been suicidal, should be consistent with one or more of the core values below.1 These values are also relevant for suicide loss survivors.

  • Foster hope and help people find meaning and purpose in life
  • Preserve dignity and counter stigma, shame, and discrimination
  • Connect people to peer supports
  • Promote community connectedness
  • Engage and support family and friends
  • Respect and support cultural, ethnic, and/or spiritual beliefs and traditions
  • Promote choice and collaboration in care
  • Provide timely access to care and support

Reference: National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention: Suicide Attempt Survivors Task Force. (2014). The Way Forward: Pathways to hope, recovery, and wellness with insights from lived experience. Washington, DC: Author.


Resources & Stories