To reduce the youth suicide rate and improve the mental health safety net provided to college students nationwide.
The Jed Foundation created Web-based Ulifeline to give college students mental health information and link them to a mental health center at their respective colleges. Launched at the University of Arizona in 2001, the site allows students nationwide to download information, ask questions, make appointments, and seek help anonymously. The site also can be customized to the needs of any college or university to reflect the programs and policies of its mental health center. Almost five hundred universities now participate in Ulifeline, which serves more than three million college students nationwide.
Students who log on to the site are greeted by a drop-down box that enables them to choose a university; a verification option ensures they attend that school. By using the Self e-Valuator, an interactive screening device developed by the Duke University Medical Center, visitors to the site can determine whether they (or a friend) are at risk from depression, substance abuse, eating disorders, or other mental health problems. Go Ask Alice, an FAQ produced by Columbia University, provides responses to hundreds of anonymously posted inquiries from college students. And the site also offers a mental health library and drug database, with information supplied by more than one hundred and fifty healthcare organizations.