Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) is a public education program that teaches the skills needed to identify, understand, and respond to signs of behavioral health challenges or crises. First Aid is given until appropriate supports are received.
The adult Mental Health First Aid course is appropriate for anyone 18 years and older who wants to learn how to help a person who may be experiencing a mental health related crisis or problem. Topics covered include anxiety, depression, psychosis, and addictions. The adult course is available in both English and Spanish. Course participants come from a variety of backgrounds and play various roles in a community including: faith groups, management, community work, non-profit and for profit settings. Participants who complete the course receive a three (3) year national certification.
Youth Mental Health First Aid is designed to teach parents, family members, caregivers, teachers, school staff, peers, neighbors, health and human services workers, and other caring citizens how to help an adolescent (age 12-18) who is experiencing a mental health or addictions challenge or is in crisis. Youth Mental Health First Aid is primarily designed for adults who regularly interact with young people. The course introduces common mental health challenges for youth, reviews typical adolescent development, and teaches a five (5)-step action plan for how to help young people in both crisis and non-crisis situations. Topics covered include anxiety, depression, substance use, disorders in which psychosis may occur, disruptive behavior disorders (including AD/HD), and eating disorders. Participants who complete the course receive a three (3) year national certification.
This training is specifically designed for adults who work in Law Enforcement and Public Safety (law enforcement officers, private security, probation and parole, fire/EMS, corrections, dispatchers, courts, legal, town watch, etc.).
For a number of reasons, individuals experiencing mental illness and substance use disorders often have more contact with the criminal justice system than the general population does. Thus, the better prepared officers and staff are to respond effectively and appropriately, the more likely the interaction will be a positive one. Mental Health First Aid offers a tailored supplement which builds upon the effectiveness of the standard Mental Health First Aid curriculum by focusing on the unique experiences and needs of law enforcement, corrections, and public safety audiences. Participants who complete the course receive a three (3) year national certification.
Mental Health First Aid for Veterans is an eight (8)-hour course specifically designed for veterans, family members of veterans, and personnel working with the military and families who want to learn how to help a veteran who may be experiencing a mental health related crisis or problem. The Veterans Certification course of MHFA is taught by veterans and family members of veterans. Family members and personnel working with military and families are often not aware of how to engage veterans with mental illnesses and addictions. In addition to the impact of military service on the veteran, each has a circle of family (significant other, children, parents, siblings, etc.) and friends who are also impacted by their military service. Mental Health First Aid is a valuable resource that can make a difference in the lives of the more than 22 million veterans, their families, and the communities they live in. Participants who complete the course receive a three (3) year national certification.
Mental illnesses and substance use challenges often present during adolescence and young adulthood, when many individuals are students at colleges and universities. College and university faculty, campus staff, families and students can learn how to help each other within a framework of their unique culture and set of resources. Mental Health First Aid in higher education is an eight (8)- hour course offering a tailored supplement which builds upon the effectiveness of the standard Mental Health First Aid curriculum by focusing on higher education settings. Participants who complete the course receive a three (3) year national certification.
Mental Health First Aid for Older Adults is a tailored supplement which builds upon the standard Adult Mental Health First Aid curriculum. This course introduces participants to the unique risk factors and warning signs of mental health problems in adults over the age of 65. This course is designed for adults who regularly interact with older people (family members, caretakers, nursing staff, nurse aides, etc.).