CASA – Looking back and moving forward
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This month, CASA is celebrating our ten years of involvement in suicide prevention in NZ. Over this time, our programs and offerings have evolved based on insights we have gained and emerging evidence. Some of these changes are described below.

Looking back – the highlights

  1. The formation of CASA to continue the delivery of the Towards Wellbeing programme. This developed as a joint venture with Child Youth and Family (CYF) and the Wellington School of Medicine. The programme was developed out of research by Annette Beautrais, Peter Ellis and Don Smith which highlighted the risk of suicide among youth in contact with CYF. TWB was recognised as “breaking new ground in developing ways of working together to make a difference” (Professor Silburn).
  2. The successful development and continued delivery of the Community Postvention Response Service.
  3. The successful development and the continued delivery of the Coronial Data sharing service
  4. The successful development and delivery of training that has been responsive to needs of organisations and communities.
  5. The development of a Maori caucus to enable us to more successfully achieve our aim of increasing responsiveness to Maori.
  6. The development of a memorandum of understanding with He Waka Tapu to formalise our partnership and commitment to identify opportunities for working together to improve wellbeing of whanau.
  7. The requests to present and share our knowledge and experience in national forums such as the Suicide Prevention conferences and Turamarama ki te ora and at Internal Association of. Suicide prevention conferences including in Australia, China and Canada.
  8. Being part of a network of committed agencies and communities all working together to reduce the impact of suicide in our communities. Our network of relationships span welfare, health, education, police, victim support, Le Va, Te Rau Matatini, DHBs, NGOs such as Victim Support, Youth Horizons.
  9. Having an amazing group of skilled and committed people to work for CASA that has enabledus to have achieved all this.

Moving forward

CASA continues to be committed to making a difference and we are proud of what we have achieved to date. We strive to continue to “to break new ground” by bring together clinical and experiential knowledge and experience and working collaboratively with others. The NZ Suicide prevention Strategy is currently under review and there will be a new 10 year strategy from 2017 which will shape the direction of suicide prevention work over the next 10 years. CASA has contributed to this process through participation in the external advisory group, providing a written submission and attendance at consultation workshops. We look forward to the opportunities this will bring.

- Maree Inder, CEO