• The work of prevention is not done solely through focusing on risk factors, warning signs, and intervention. Rather involves discovering, teaching and celebrating resilience, help-seeking, creating connections, cultivating Strength, and belonging.

    Sources of Strength is an evidence-based, upstream prevention program that employs a Strength-based wellness approach to improving the health and wellbeing of individuals and communities. This program has been implemented within a variety of settings, cultures, and age groups across the country and internationally.

    Our Elementary Curriculum continues our commitment to moving further upstream, increasing health and wellness and decreasing negative downstream outcomes through empowering individuals and communities full of connection, belonging, and resilience.

    As Sources of Strength works to give students tools to develop their Strength, resilience, and help-seeking behaviors, we feel it is of utmost importance to ensure we are using evidence-based practices to inspire meaningful outcomes. Below are some core components of how and why we do what we do.

    Evidence-Based: The Sources of Strength secondary school model has become one of the nation’s most rigorously evaluated and widely disseminated suicide prevention programs. The program has shown outcomes in increasing healthy coping, help-seeking, connection and trust toward adults, and utilization of protective factors associated with reduced risk for suicide, substance misuse, and violence. The elementary program is evidence-informed by these outcomes and will undergo rigorous randomized control trials to establish an elementary specific evidence-base.

    Upstream: Our primary focus is to move upstream in the prevention field in order to build resiliency and wellness. We strive to create a healthy culture around early help-seeking, and promote internalized Strengths at the individual and community levels to prevent the onset of crisis and help people live healthy, thriving lives.

    Strength-Based: Sources of Strength cultivates the identification, development, and utilization of eight protective factors, or Strengths. These protective factors are Family Support, Positive Friends, Mentors, Healthy Activities, Generosity, Spirituality, Physical Health, and Mental Health. Ultimately, these eight Strengths can empower individuals and communities to lean into their own sense of resilience in order to promote health and wellness in themselves and others.

    Curriculum Structure

    Sources of Strength Elementary Curriculum is comprised of 12 units containing several lessons that build upon the unit topic. The lessons can be implemented within grades three through five. Lessons are designed to be approximately 30 minutes in length, and typically facilitated one to two times per week. The lessons will be led by a trained Sources of Strength School Counselor and facilitated with supplemental lessons by the classroom teacher.  The classroom teacher is strongly encouraged to participate in lessons for greater integration and application of concepts in the classroom.