Community Resource

Parent/Caregiver Toolkit: Guide To Navigating Youth Behavorial Health - Digital

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The Parent/Caregiver’s Toolkit: Guide to Navigating Youth Behavioral Health is now in a new digital version, available in Monmouth County and developed by the Society for the Prevention of Teen Suicide, based in Freehold.

Any individual interested in accessing the toolkit can do so through this interest form: Once the form is in place, the user will receive a code to access the toolkit (monmouthcounty). Then the user can go to and create an account to get the prompt for the code and access the toolkit.

The digital toolkit is available in nine languages and is accessible on both desktops and mobile devices.

The digital toolkit debuted in Monmouth County on Friday, March 1, and is "a vital resource" to support area families and youth, giving caregivers more information about what to do, ask, and expect if their child is experiencing behavioral health concerns, the society says.

As funding becomes available, the online resource will be able to be accessed by people in every county in the state, he said.

The Monmouth digital resource was funded by an award to SPTS by Impact 100: Jersey Coast, he added.

From its base in Freehold, the society has grown in the services it provides, said Kalbach, especially in the COVID period that saw increasing rates of behavioral health issues, such as depression and anxiety.

The society by last year provided the physical toolkit book to every sixth-grader in the state, under a state initiative also funded by the state, he said. There is also an online suicide prevention program for educators the society offers that is used nationally, he added.

The Society for the Prevention of Teen Suicide, Inc. (SPTS) is a public charity, incorporated in 2005, founded by two Monmouth County fathers who each experienced the devastating loss of a teenage child by suicide, according to the organization.

SPTS is a holistic program, it says, dedicated to increasing awareness, saving lives and reducing the stigma of suicide through specialized training programs and mental health resources that help youth build a life of resiliency. SPTS is focused on comprehensive youth suicide prevention for ages 5 to 18.

“The Parent/Caregiver Toolkit includes vital information for parents to have while navigating behavioral and mental health issues with their child. It works to ease anxiety and worry that parents and caregivers may experience during this difficult time by providing specific information on behavioral and mental health,” the society's Clinical Director Susan Tellone said.

The new online resource consolidates many local, national, and online resources, providing "a one-stop destination for families seeking guidance and assistance."

Here are examples of the information provided to parents and caregivers:

  • Warning signs of suicide.
  • How to have difficult conversations with their children.
  • Local support groups, national helplines, or online forums.

This toolkit has all of the important information needed to help keep children safe. It serves as a roadmap of information, eliminating the need to spend additional energy searching for resources online and streamlining the process of finding the right support.

Eligibility Area families and youth (Monmouth County is the pilot program)

Last Updated: 03/04/24