Youth Mental Health First Aid is a public education curriculum focused on training participants to help youth (ages 12-18) who may be experiencing a mental health challenge or crisis.
Youth Mental Health First Aid 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 young person developing a mental health problem or experiencing a mental health crisis. Mental Health First Aid uses role-playing and simulations to demonstrate how to assess a mental health crisis; select interventions provide initial help; and connect young people to professional, peer, social, and self-help care.
WHAT WILL PARTICIPANTS LEARN?
The course teaches participants the risk factors and warning signs of a variety of mental health challenges common among adolescents, including anxiety, depression, psychosis, eating disorders, AD/HD, disruptive behavior disorders, and substance use disorder.
Participants do not learn to diagnose, nor how to provide therapy or counseling – rather, participants learn a core five-step action plan to support an adolescent developing signs and symptoms of mental illness or in an emotional crisis:
- Assess for risk of suicide or harm
- Listen non-judgmentally
- Give reassurance and information
- Encourage appropriate professional help
- Encourage self-help and other support strategies
WHO SHOULD TAKE THE COURSE?
The course is designed for adults whom regularly interact with adolescents, but may also be appropriate for older adolescents (16 and older) so as to encourage youth peer-to-peer interaction. Anyone who regularly works or interacts with youth – teachers, coaches, camp counselors, mentors, parents, juvenile justice and child welfare professionals may find the course content useful.
HOW CAN I FIND AND REGISTER FOR A TRAINING?
Click here to learn more and find an upcoming training or trainer in your local area.