By Lauren Strauss

Published: Dec. 12, 2023 at 3:31 PM CST|Updated: 19 hours ago

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WIFR) – Organizations that help at-risk youth facing mental health challenges can now apply for a grant through the Illinois Department of Public Health.

More than $300,000 dollars will be split among organizations in the state. Applications will be accepted until 5 p.m. Feb. 2, 2024, and recipients will be announced in March.

The grant will support programs that help staff identify, assess and assist youth who may be at risk for suicide. Employees will learn how to assess and measure suicide risk, mental health first aid and gatekeeper training. Training is part of the ongoing effort to meet the goals of the Illinois Suicide Prevention Strategic Plan 2020.

“Many young people across Illinois are facing unprecedented challenges affecting their mental health and wellness,” Dr. Sameer Vohra, director of IDPH, said. “Our current mental health crisis makes it critical for professionals to receive necessary training to spot warning signs and reduce the risk of suicide. We urge eligible organizations across Illinois to submit applications to provide this important suicide prevention training.”

Applicants can get more information and apply online at CSFA (

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