Steering Straight: Adapting suicide risk safety planning as a prevention-focused self-management resource for the Australian farming community



This paper draws on the principles of suicide risk safety planning to co-design a farming community resource for preventing and managing risks to mental health.


This project was undertaken in the Great South Coast Region of Victoria, Australia.


A working group (n = 6–8) from the Victorian farming community contributed to the iterative co-design and co-production of Steering Straight: My plan to keep on track. Twenty-four members of the farming community pilot tested Steering Straight.


Co-design to develop, pilot and refine the resource with working group and target farming community.


Steering Straight was viewed positively by the farming community as a tool that prompts prioritising well-being; encourages reflection, planning and concrete steps towards taking action; helps set and meet personal goals; is simple and practical; and identifies pathways to support. Most participants (94%) completed Steering Straight on their own, taking approximately 15–30 min to create their personalised plan. Questions most likely to be filled in related to recognising personal signs of deteriorating well-being and listing and planning enjoyable activities. A majority of participants (67%) kept a hard copy of their Steering Straight plan on hand to refer back to, while 78% expressed a preference for a digital version.


The co-design and co-production process resulted in a tailored prevention-focused resource that was accepted and valued by the farming community.