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Facilitating Suicide Bereavement Support Groups For adults:

training workshop series

Do you facilitate a suicide bereavement support group? 

Would you like to become a facilitator, or start a new group? 


Whether you’ve been facilitating a group for years or it’s just an idea in the back of your mind, join us to learn best practices for facilitating warm, welcoming, and effective suicide bereavement support groups.


These interactive, online training workshops are for anyone with a personal or professional interest in facilitating suicide bereavement support groups (these are not meant as healing conferences; if you’ve lost someone to suicide, you need to be at least 2 years from your loss to register). Mental health professionals are warmly welcome; although we don't offer CE credit, we can provide you with proof of attendance. 


Joanne L. Harpel, MPhil, CT, JD, President of Coping After Suicide, will lead this unique training series. An international authority on suicide loss with decades of experience as a suicide bereavement support group facilitator and trainer, and the survivor of her brother’s suicide, Joanne is the original co-creator of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention's Support Group Facilitator Training Program, delivered to thousands of individuals nationwide. She has been providing this exceptional training for 20 years, including for the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, the Mental Health Departments of  Georgia and Oklahoma, and the New York State Funeral Directors Association. 


Workshop 1: The Nuts & Bolts of Getting Started

  • essential elements of successful groups

  • what the facilitator's role is (and isn't)

  • what to watch out for

  • administration, publicity, and attendance

  • how do I know I'm ready?

Workshop 2: Best Practices & How-to’s

  • essential facilitation skills and strategies

  • open and closed groups

  • the “Hierarchy of Options”

  • handling silence

  • go-to ideas to keep in your back pocket


Workshop 3: Advanced Skills & Tricky Situations

  • monopolizers

  • conflict between group members

  • the shoulds (judging and advice-giving)

  • group members who are “stuck”

  • handling a group member in crisis

  • boundaries, expectations, and compassion fatigue


Workshop 4: Best Practices for Zoom Groups (And Other Creative Ideas To Try)

  • special considerations for Zoom groups

  • administration, logistics, and guidelines

  • using journaling and other exercises to create closeness, connection, and community 


The registration fee is $195 and covers one 4-workshop series. Can’t attend live? No problem. We’ll send you the Zoom recordings and program materials if you register.

2024 dates: 

  • Monday, August 5 and Tuesday, August 6 from 12-2 and 3-5 Eastern each day

  • Tuesday, October 29 and Wednesday, October 30 from 12-2 and 3-5 Eastern each day


"Hands down one of the best programs I've ever been to.

What an honor and an experience."




"The single best virtual workshop I've attended

since the pandemic began"

"Amazing and informative"

"I've been facilitating groups for a long time,

and learned so many new things."


You can also purchase the Zoom recordings and program materials from the last time we offered the program ($150).

Learn how to facilitate suicide bereavement support groups for children and teens through our online training workshop series.

These programs are offered in collaboration with Rethink The Conversation's Conversation Masterclass series. 

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