Youth Mental Health First Aid Training Available
October 17, 2012
Mental Health First Aid USA (MHFA) has launched a new curriculum focused on helping youth (ages 12-18) who may be experiencing a mental health challenge or in crisis. Youth MHFA is a public education program which introduces participants to the unique risk factors and warning signs of mental health problems in adolescents, builds understanding of the importance of early intervention, and, most importantly teaches individuals how to help a youth in crisis or experiencing a mental health or substance use challenge. Youth MHFA is an 8-hour course that uses role-playing and simulations to demonstrate how to assess a mental health crisis; select interventions and provide initial help; and connect young people to professional, peer, social, and self-help care.
The course is designed for adults whom regularly interact with adolescents, but may also be appropriate for older adolescents (16 and older) to encourage youth peer-to-peer interaction. Anyone who regularly works or interacts with youth — teachers, athletic coaches, mentors, juvenile justice professionals — may find the course content useful. The core MHFA course has been successfully offered to a variety of audiences including hospital staff, employers and business leaders, faith communities, law enforcement, and the general public.
Youth MHFA is not specifically designed for parents of youth with mental health challenges. Although parents and families may find the course content useful, the course provides a basic level of information and guidance rather than in-depth information on navigating the health care system, which parents may wish to explore.
MHFA USA worked with experts at the National Technical Assistance Center for Children's Mental Health. Georgetown University Center for Child and Human Development to adapt the Australian youth manual for US audiences.
Continuing education credits, including Act 48 credits are available through a co-sponsorship arrangement with Drexel University. For more information or to schedule a training, please contact Jen Bankard at firstname.lastname@example.org or 717-364-3280.