LIFE IS PRECIOUS™
Established in 2008, Life is Precious™ (LIP) is a Suicide Prevention program for at-risk Latina teens
in Brooklyn, the Bronx, Queens and Manhattan. The only program of its kind in the country,
LIP provides services that relate directly to the risk factors associated with suicide ideation and attempt.
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Opened in 2008, LIP has four program locations - the Bronx (2008), Brooklyn (2009), Queens (2015) and
Manhattan – Washington Heights (2019). Each afternoon, the teens take part in activities that help alleviate
the risk factors associated with Latina adolescent suicide including academic support, expressive arts therapies, health & wellness activities and family services. In 2019, 178 Latina teens and their families accessed services. To be eligible for Life is Precious™,
the girls must be enrolled in and regularly attending school, under the care of a mental health clinician and have parents/guardians’ permission.
Our goal is to show that LIP is a community informed, evidenced based model of care. Researchers
have completed phase one of the evaluation where fidelity testing took place and a manual of
operations was developed. Phase Two, which
is working with control groups, is currently in process.
What Life is Precious™ Achieves
LIP offers activities that allow the teens to thrive by finding their unique voice and strive by providing the tools to
help them envision and achieve goals. Through LIP the girls have learned to advocate for themselves and their peers through civic engagement.
To date, more than 350 Latina teens have participated in LIP
not one of whom has completed suicide. LIP's accomplishments are measured by the positive results achieved by the girls.
An evaluation by the NYS Psychiatric Institute/Columbia University - NYS Center of Excellence for Cultural Competence shows that for every month a Latina teen participates in LIP her level of suicide ideation and depression decreases.
Community Education and Awareness
In February 2019, Comunilife launched ”Ni Una Más” a new
public awareness campaign designed to reduce
suicide among Latina adolescents. The campaign was launched
in Washington Heights, Manhattan through print and
social media and expanded to the boroughs of the Bronx,
Brooklyn and Queens.