Kristina Zurich

Lived-experience Instructor

Lived experience

As a suicide attempt survivor, Kristina Zurich devotes herself to improving the care for others who suffer the way she did.

After surviving two suicide attempts Kristina made recovery her full-time job. Over time she found balance, stability, and the beginning of a new chapter of her life.

Committed to Advocacy

Kristina had already begun sharing her experiences by speaking at NAMI (the National Alliance on Mental Illness) programs and joined the patient and family advisory board at the University of Rochester Medical Center when a mutual friend introduced her to Tony Pisani, founder of SafeSide Prevention.

The timing was just right.

Kristina had decided she was ready to go a step further and use her experience to improve care for others who suffer like she did. Tony had just committed to no longer speak for patients but with patients, and had begun the search for a collaborator.

A Perfect Fit

In their first meeting, Tony showed the SafeSide framework to Kristina. She was hooked.

In the framework Kristina saw the roadmap of her own recovery. She saw the attitudes, programs, and practices that had made a difference for her. She knew she wanted to be part of the SafeSide team and bring these approaches to health and behavioral health care providers.

Now as part of that team, Kristina co-teaches every program with Tony, contributes to training events, and is involved at all stages of development of educational materials.

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