Alternatives to Suicide


The Alternatives to Suicide approach was developed in 2008 by Wildflower Alliance (formerly known as the Massachusetts Recovery Learning Community) in the United States. Recovery Learning Communities are peer-run networks of self-help/peer support, advocacy, information, referrals and training activities. The idea behind them is to empower people from a trauma informed perspective to create spaces for sharing and healing outside of medicalised mental health models.

Part of the work is recognizing that mainstream and medicalised mental health approaches have systemic injustices imbedded within such as racism, sexism, transphobia and psychiatric oppression and working to undo these. Alternatives to Suicide is a much more relational approach involving the peer principles of connection and confidence about listening, holding space, and being present without judgment or assessment. In this space people who have or are experiencing suicidal thoughts can share in an equal way with others without the fear of being sent to the emergency room. The style is more conversational and organic, rather than being strongly directed by facilitators.

In South Australia, the Learned Experience Leadership and Advocacy Network (LELAN) are running the Embedding Alternatives to Suicide (Alt2su) project. They have been training peer facilitators and are rolling out five 'pilot' groups across different demographics starting with the fortnightly Alt2su group at Mind Australia from 10.30am – 12.00pm on March 9th at their Mile End office at 73 Henley Beach Road Mile End.

The Alt2su approach is about harm reduction rather than an assessment and risk-averse approach and champions the idea that people are the experts in their own lives. People can use the groups as a sign-post for getting through a difficult time and can share as little or as much as they want to when they actually get to the group.

To find out more about the Alt2su project visit the LELAN website: 


LETSS Talk....New Years Resolutions

Sign up to LETSS Updates!


* Indicates required field
Select one:

Contact Us

1800 013 755 

Follow Us

We would like to Acknowledge that the land we provide a service on today is the traditional lands for the Kaurna people and that we respect their spiritual relationship with their Country. We also acknowledge the Kaurna people as the traditional custodians of the Adelaide region and that their cultural and heritage beliefs are still as important to the living Kaurna people today.        


Copyright © LETSS