September is National Suicide Prevention Awareness Month
Our services were first known in San Mateo County in 1966 under the name of “Peninsula Suicide Prevention, Inc.”– a small human services agency focused on local suicide prevention. Over the next 50+ years, our small agency grew into Youth and Family Enrichment Services, providing a wide range of services to San Mateo County. We renamed ourselves to be “StarVista” in 2011.
Our staff now boasts 240 doctors, clinicians, social workers, and professionals and 45 clinical interns who touch the lives of more than 41,000 individuals and families each year.
Providing mental health crisis services in San Mateo County for more than 55 years.
Founded in 1966, the Crisis Intervention and Suicide Prevention Center was the first program of StarVista. As one of the first crisis centers in California, the StarVista Crisis Center has been dedicated to crisis intervention and suicide prevention for over half a century, offering free services to youth and adults of San Mateo County.
The StarVista Crisis Center is accredited by the American Association of Suicidology and belongs to the Suicide Prevention Lifeline national network of crisis centers.
In Fiscal Year 2021-2022, StarVista’s Crisis Center answered 13,441 Calls to our 24/7 Crisis Hotline and referred 69 of them to our Youth SOS Team. Read the full FY21-22 Annual Report here.
StarVista’s Community Wellness and Crisis Response Team (CWCRT) Pilot Program, in partnership with San Mateo County Behavioral Health and Recovery Services and 4 police departments: San Mateo, Daly City, South San Francisco, and Redwood City, is designed to improve law enforcement response to community members experiencing mental health crises.
Over the course of the pilot program, SMPD has received approximately 1,700 calls for service that qualified for a possible CWCRT response, and our clinician has responded to close to 400 calls for service.
In crisis or need support in San Mateo County?
The Crisis Center provides suicide intervention services and programs for San Mateo County residents, including a 24-hour crisis hotline, mobile youth crisis response team, online and text teen crisis support, and educational presentations to the community and schools.
The Crisis Center also provides clinical services focusing on assessment, crisis de-escalation, and short-term therapy through their Youth Stabilization, Opportunity, and Support team for youth under the age of twenty-five.
Our professional staff provide lifechanging support and services with passion, dedication, and a deep sense of caring and concern for the welfare of every person we serve.
24/7 Crisis Hotline 650-579-0350
Nacional de Prevención del Suicidio 1-888-628-9454
Who could call the crisis line?
• Anyone who feels sad, hopeless, or suicidal.
• Family and friends who are concerned about a loved one.
• Anyone interested in mental health treatment and service referrals.
• Or anyone who just needs some support through a personal crisis.
Our Suicide Hotline is available 24-hours a day, seven days a week for crisis intervention.
Watch StarVista’s Crisis Intervention and Suicide Prevention leadership team discuss 5 common myths about calling the crisis line, and what callers can expect when they utilize this service.
24 Hour Crisis Hotline
For people who are feeling depressed, suicidal – or who just want to talk to someone about problems they’re facing – StarVista’s 24/7 Crisis Hotline 650-579-0350 offers a safe and confidential place for people to explore feelings, concerns, vent frustrations, clarify problems, and get referrals. Our crisis hotline is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week for crisis intervention. Trained crisis workers treat callers with empathy and compassion, and provide referrals for community resources and services.
Crisis Center holds multiple training sessions a year for those interested in volunteering with the crisis hotline. Once interviewed and selected, crisis hotline workers receive an in-depth 5-week internal training and hands-on practice before taking shifts on the line.
Teen Crisis Services
Teen Crisis Services consist of an online teen chat and teen text line, which are free, peer-to-peer services that are accessible from www.sanmateocrisis.org or by texting 650-747-6463. Teens can chat confidentially with trained youth peer counselors under Crisis Center staff supervision about various topics.
While mainly focused on crisis intervention and suicide prevention, teens can also talk about school stress, relationship issues, and mental health challenges. While the program is intended to focus on youth ages 13 and up, no youth will be turned away on the basis of age.
Crisis Center staff perform mental health presentations at schools and in the community throughout San Mateo County each year to both students and adults. These interactive workshops cover topics including mental health, suicide myths and facts, risk factors, warning signs, and how to talk to someone who is suicidal. To schedule a presentation, visit www.sanmateocrisis.org/educational-presentations.
The Youth Stabilization, Opportunity, and Support (SOS) Team provides over the phone or in-person response to youth ages 0-25 living in San Mateo County that are experiencing an escalation in mental health symptoms, ranging from suicidal ideation to undiagnosed mental health disorders. The team is comprised of mental health clinicians and family partners to comprehensively address any assessment, psychoeducation, therapeutic, or case management needs. Anyone may access this 24/7 service by calling the crisis hotline at 650-579-0350.
In addition to responding to families in crisis, the Youth SOS team also provides San Mateo County schools assistance with suicide assessments and/or crisis intervention. All Youth SOS services are free of cost.
StarVista’s Crisis Center’s website www.sanmateocrisis.org provides a dedicated space to share program services, updates, resources, and more. The website provides information on mental health and local community resources 24 hours a day.
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Join StarVista’s Health Ambassador Program for Youth (HAP-Y) and San Mateo Public Library on Friday, September 15 from 5 to 8 PM for a movie screening of: The Perks of Being a Wallflower. To be followed by a discussion on Suicide Awareness. Pizza and light refreshments will be provided. Come with your blankets, pillows, and favorite stuffed animals! Sign up required.
*Please note: This event is for youth ages 14+. The San Mateo Public library closes at 5 PM on Fridays. Please enter through the patio door.