The Inspire Difference
“Please just hear my thank you. Thank you for being there when no one else is here for me. You have just saved a life. Thank you. Now I have tools to help me cope and suicide will not win!”
Chrissie – age 18
Inspire’s mission is to help millions of young people lead happier lives.
Working directly with teens and young adults, Inspire USA designs and delivers innovative technology-based services that promote mental health and prevent suicide. ReachOut.com is the Inspire USA Foundation’s primary online platform and avenue of outreach.
Inspire USA takes a strengths-based approach to its work with a focus on the prevention of mental health difficulties and the active promotion of mental health and wellbeing including those factors that have been shown to build resilience in young people. Inspire USA is part of an international network, which includes Australia (where Inspire began) and Ireland.
Using proven programs and new technologies, Inspire reaches out to young people aged 14 to 24 in the United States to meet their mental health needs in a way – and to an extent – that traditional mental health services can’t. Here’s how:
Teens and young adults are at the center of everything we do. They’re directly involved in developing and delivering all Inspire initiatives to see that they align with the needs, interests, language, and culture of youth. Research shows that preventative approaches that directly involve young people are proven to be more effective in building resilience and reducing mental health problems in participants.
Inspire is built on the media young people use most – Internet-based technologies – to strengthen the life-affirming factors that enhance their mental health and well-being. These factors include positive participation, resilience, life skills, and social connectedness.
Trust and Authenticity/Social Branding
Inspire builds trusted social brands that become part of the fabric of young people’s daily lives. Our goal: Just as having a Coke may come to mind for a thirsty young person, a young person who is going through a tough time will know they can log onto reachout.com for support. In Australia, one of every three young people recognizes the ReachOut! brand. We plan to match those results here in the United States through engaging web pages, online social networking, and partnerships with other youth brands and effective youth organizations.
Research, Evaluation and Policy
Research and evaluation underpin everything we do. We measure the impact of Inspire programs and contribute to the international evidence base on the most effective ways to improve the mental health and well-being of young people.
Inspire USA has participated on national advisory boards and helped to determine recommendations on social policy. In 2011, Inspire USA participated as a member of the Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention, the steering committee for the Suicide Prevention Resource Center, and the Action Alliance Task Force on Clinical Preparation. Inspire USA also began participation in the international Young and Well Cooperate Research Centre based in Australia and had a lead role in the research design for evaluating an online well being center.
Inspire ensures that our programs are based on evidence and best practice. Our research team:
- Contributes to the evidence base about what works in improving young people’s mental health and well-being
- Builds sustainable partnerships with academic and other organizations to grow the evidence base
- Systematically measures program outcomes against program objectives and goals
- Continually improves program delivery through feedback and active participation from young people and staff who work with youth