Great South Coast Suicide Prevention Place Based Trial

The Great South Coast Place Based Suicide Prevention Trial aims to deliver coordinated and collaborative strategies for reducing the rate of death by suicide. It is one of two such trials underway in western Victoria.


The Victorian Suicide Prevention Framework 2016-25 offers a coordinated approach to reducing the suicide toll. Victoria’s Primary Health Networks are leading the response to this framework through 12 place-based strategies to suicide prevention. The Great South Coast trial is one of these 12 collaborative responses, acknowledging that the places where people live and spend time affects their health and wellbeing. Part of WVPHN’s mental health funding from the Federal Government has been allocated to the trial.

  • Reduce the rates of suicide
  • Reduce suicide attempts
  • Improve individual resilience and wellbeing
  • Improve systems to prevent suicide in an ongoing way.

The Great South Coast trial is collaborative approach. It is steered by a leadership group compromising community organisations, volunteers and people with lived experience.

A set of recommended priority areas were identified drawing from:

  • an analysis of existing support services in the Great South Coast area and identifying gaps
  • community and stakeholder consultation including with service providers and people with a lived experience of suicide, suicidality, and bereavement from suicide.

Those priority areas were then used as the basis for developing the activities listed below


As part of the trial, a series of complementary activities were identified and are being delivered. Each activity is being monitored and evaluated against a shared outcomes framework.

Connect Back resources package

The Connect Back project involves producing a community resource of key local networks and groups that provide formal and informal community-based support for people at risk of suicide.

Young men’s health and wellbeing

In conjunction with headspace, this project targeted 18 to 25-year-old men. It involved consultation and awareness-raising sessions to:

  • Better understand their risks and vulnerabilities relating to risk of suicide and
  • Support and engage the wider community recognising and responding to young men at risk of suicide.

Read the Young men taking the first step Project Information (PDF 323KB)

Men’s health and wellbeing

Focusing on men 26 years and older, the project offered mental health education and welfare support programs to 12 organisations in the Great South Coast area. Under the coordination of Outside the Locker Room, the project will also helped mental health planning for the region, drawing on key data on male vulnerability and resilience to suicide.

Read the Men’s health and wellbeing Project Information (PDF 251KB)

Farmer health and wellbeing

Deakin University’s National Centre for Farmer Health collaborated with the community – including the members of the farming community – to develop a model for delivering peer-supported evidence based psychological therapy to farmers experiencing depression or distress.

Read the Farmer health and wellbeing Project Information (PDF 232KB)

Youth health and wellbeing

Live4Life will develop a ‘How to’ guide for peer-to-peer mentoring. Young people will be supported and encouraged to champion the initiative alongside positive mental health messages in their schools and communities. The guide is among a suite of upcoming activities designed to help young people’s health and wellbeing.

Read the Live4Life Project Information (PDF 217KB)

Live4Life Profiles (PDF 6MB)

Improving general practice capacity

General practices in the Great South Coast region were invited to participate in a review of their understanding of and capacity and capabilities for working with people at risk of suicide. It  included an analysis of GP professional development needs; barriers, gaps and opportunities; and how to incorporate Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultural awareness.

Read the General Practice capacity analysis Project Information (PDF 167KB)

Yarning Circle expansion

The Yarning Circle Expansion project enhanced the awareness of and access to culturally safe youth mental health and wellbeing services for young Aboriginal people in the Great South Coast region. It delivered early-intervention information and activities regarding mental health, alcohol and other drug use and physical health to Aboriginal young people, with the incorporation of cultural safety components.

Read the Yarning Circle expansion Project Information (PDF 281KB)

LivingWorks Start Suicide Prevention Training

LivingWorks Start is a free 90-minute online training program for community members of the Great South Coast aged 15 and over. It teaches how to recognise when someone is having thoughts of suicide and how to respond to keep them safe.

Read the LivingWorks Start suicide prevention training Project Information (PDF 2MB)

LivingWorks Start campaign materials can be downloaded from here

To have printed posters sent to your workplace, sporting club or community group, please contact us via

Trial partners and supporters

The Great South Coast Place Based Suicide Prevention Trial community-led Leadership Group includes representatives from:

  • Ambulance Victoria
  • AFL Country – Western District
  • BROPHY Child and Family Services
  • Corangamite Shire Council
  • Glenelg Shire Council
  • headspace
  • Let’s Talk Foundation
  • Lifeline
  • Live4Life
  • National Centre for Farmer Health
  • Rural Financial Counselling Service
  • South West Health Care
  • South West Primary Care Partnerships
  • St John of God
  • Victoria Police
  • Wellways
  • Western District Health Service
  • Youth Affairs Council Victoria

Seeking urgent help

If you, or someone you know is in immediate danger, please call 000, visit your nearest hospital emergency or use any of the crisis helplines:

Last modified: 31 May, 2022