Recovery Bulletin
August 28, 2017  | 

Organization Highlight: JED

JED is a nonprofit that exists to protect emotional health and prevent suicide and addiction in our nation’s teens and young adults.

JED partners with high schools and colleges to strengthen their mental health, substance use and suicide prevention programs and systems; equips teens and young adults with the skills and knowledge to help themselves and each other; and encourages community awareness, understanding and action for young adult mental health.

In 1998, Donna and Phil Satow lost their youngest son, Jed, to suicide. Since then, they have worked to understand this unendurable tragedy. Although suicide was and continues to be a leading cause of death among young adults, schools had no uniform model for preventing suicide on campus, and communities struggled to overcome the shame and secrecy that prevented honest discussion of mental health. In 2000, they founded The Jed Foundation (JED) to surmount these hurdles and launch a blueprint for prevention. Today, JED is the nation’s leading organization dedicated to young adult mental health and preventing suicide and addiction.

In young people especially, it is imperative to view substance use problems as occurring within a context of mental health and social and emotional difficulties. It is most useful to address these problems from a comprehensive and holistic perspective.

-John MacPhee – CEO of The JED Foundation

JED’s funding comes from caring individuals, foundations and corporations across the country, and they work with over 170 colleges – representing over 1.9 million students – to enhance policies, educational programming and clinical services around mental health, substance use issues and suicide prevention.

Among others this includes: having well publicized medical amnesty policies, encouraging colleges to have naloxone available to campus first responders and in high risk areas, having access to SBIRT informed services, having substance free housing, promoting life skills and substance free activities on campus.


Notable JED programs include:

  1. Half of Us: An award-winning program from JED & MTV featuring a library of free-for-use videos including PSAs, celebrities and students talking about their personal experiences with mental health and substance use. Half of Us helps young people feel less alone and encourages them to reach out for help.
  2. Set to Go: a new program that guides students, families and high school educators through the social, emotional and mental health challenges related to the transition out of high school to college and adulthood. Set to Go promotes resilience and protective factors that lower the risk for substance misuse.
  3. ULifeline: a mental health resource center for college students that provides information about emotional health issues and the resources available on over 1,600 campuses. It also offers a confidential mental health self-screening tool.


“Seek help! Whether it is through therapy or attending a support group, help and treatment are available and effective. Also, be patient. Getting better takes time and effort and you need to keep working at it -please do not give up. ”

-John MacPhee

Learn more about JED on their website.