What is Mental Health First Aid?
Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) is a training course designed to give workplaces, youth serving agencies, and members of the public the skills to help someone who is developing a mental health problem or experiencing a mental health
crisis. The evidence behind the program demonstrates that it builds mental health literacy,
decreases stigmatizing attitudes, and helps individuals identify, understand, and respond to
signs of mental illness.
Canadian statistics show that one in five of us will experience a mental health problem this year. All of us, 5 in 5, have mental health, so we all need to better understand mental hygiene, mental health and mental illness.
MHFA is an interactive workshop that teaches participants to recognize the signs that a person may be developing a mental health problem or experiencing a mental health crisis and how to provide initial help and guide the person to appropriate professional resources.
The two-day course addresses the most common and most stigmatized mental health disorders and includes signs/symptoms, risk factors, and crisis first aid for specific situations. The first four following disorders are addressed in the MHFA Basic course for Adults, and all six disorders are addressed in the MHFA for Adults who Interact with Youth.
Anxiety and Trauma-Related Disorders
Eating disorders (included in MHFA for Adults who Interact with Youth)
Deliberate self-injury (included in MHFA for Youth)
MHFA does not teach participants to become therapists or counselors. Rather, it provides the skills, knowledge, and attitudes that allow someone to offer effective first aid intervention.
“No matter where you grew up, what level of education you earned, or what profession you are in, marriage status, or culture you belong to, Mental Health First Aid is going to improve society in so many ways. It will break down barriers.”
Meet a few of our clients/speaking & teaching engagements:
Amazon, St. Lawrence College, Queen's University, Parents for Children's Mental Health, A.D.H.D. Support Group Kingston Chapter, Public Health, Pathways to Independence, Workplace Safety & Prevention Services, United Way, School Boards, and so many more!
Members of our team are active practicing mental health specialists. We are skilled at bringing mental health information to life through sharing of knowledge, expertise, experience and contact-based education. We offer 1-4 hour workshops and seminars aimed at increasing awareness and reducing stigma around mental health, increasing resilience and coping skills, and understanding of mental health and illness.
Some of our workshop topics include:
1. What is Mental Health and how does Mental Health affect you and your team?
2. What is Psychological Safety? What does it mean for you, your school environment or your workplace?
3. Compassion Fatigue & Burnout - Steps you can take to support and protect you and your team.
4. Trauma, Stress & Adversity - How do you support those following trauma or a tough situation? How do you acquire resilience? What role do ACES play?
5. Workplace Bullying & Harassment - Steps you can take to support and protect you and your team.
6. Supporting youth and young adults in times of need and crisis - learn the signs and symptoms, words to use, resources to know.
7. Feeling Good - Know how what you do, your personal interactions and the food you eat affect your mental health.
We are available for public speaking engagements.
For any of our services, please contact us at link below We look forward to supporting you and your team to be healthy, effective, productive and happy.
WHAT PEOPLE ARE SAYING
"Obviously St. Lawrence College takes mental health of its staff and students very seriously. It was very educational to hear Debra of LCMH speak about psychological safety at the wellness conference."
" Great course. Allowed me to gain some insight into mental health and some valuable tools I will be able to apply in the workplace."
"Every workplace should have presentations on mental health. It is so helpful. I have simple and useful strategies to help my team."
"The instructor's passion, knowledge and enthusiasm was the strength of the course."
"This course helped me personally. My daughter was in a crisis, and I found myself using mental health first aid. Awesome. It works."
"I feel I know myself better, that I feel better, because I now understand mental health and why I feel the way I do sometimes."
If you want to learn more about workplace solutions, course dates, or wish to schedule a course for your own group, we welcome your inquiry.
ANYONE over the age of 15 is welcome to take the MHFA for Youth course, and over the age of 18 for the MHFA Basic course. You do not need any formal training or prior knowledge in mental health. If you have a family member, friend, employee, or colleague who you think has a mental illness and you want to help, or you want to be prepared in the event it happens – then this is the course for you!
Participants who take mental health first aid training are well prepared to interact confidently about mental health with their family, friends, communities, and workplaces. Peer-reviewed published studies show that individuals trained in MHFA show success in the following areas:
There is stigma associated with mental health. Evidence shows that taking an MHFA course reduces social distance between the participant and someone experiencing a mental health problem.
One person in five will experience a mental health problem this year. Evidence shows that MHFA course participants increase their awareness of signs and symptoms of the most common mental health problems.
The most difficult part of intervening is knowing what to say. Evidence shows that taking an MHFA course increases the confidence participants have in engaging someone experiencing a mental health problem or crisis. Participants can identify professional and self-help resources for individuals with a mental health problem, and show increased mental wellness themselves.
Just like physical first aid is provided until medical treatment can be obtained, mental health first aid is given until appropriate support is found or until the crisis is resolved.
Who Should Take a Mental Health First Aid Course?
Mental Health First Aid is intended for everyone over the age of 15 years for the Youth course, and 18 years for the Basic course. MHFA has been offered in every sector and region of the country, encompassing friends and families of individuals with a mental illness or addiction, workplaces, primary care, secondary and post-secondary educational institutions, government, construction, youth and community development programs, first responders, human resource professionals, managers, and many others.