Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) Courses

Talking Mental Health provides Youth, Standard, Teen and Older Persons Mental Health First Aid Courses

February Course dates:

Older Persons MHFA– February 21st and 28th, 2019 Traralgon $200

Standard  MHFA– February 19th and 26th, 2019 Traralgon $350

Youth Mental Health First Aid

The 14-hour Youth Mental Health First Aid Course is for adults working or living with adolescents (those aged between approximately 12 and 18 years). However, the course can be relevant for those helping people who are a little younger or older. This course is particularly suitable for parents, school staff, sports coaches, and youth workers. The course curriculum is evidence-based, as informed by the MHFA Guidelines.

Research has found this course to be effective. Specifically, a study found that participants who complete the course have improved knowledge of mental illnesses and their treatments, knowledge of appropriate first aid strategies, and confidence in providing mental health first aid, as well as reduced stigma. Find out more.

What the course covers

The course teaches adults how to assist adolescents (those aged between 12 and 18 years) who are developing a mental illness, experiencing a worsening of an existing mental health problem or in a mental health crisis, until appropriate professional help is received or the crisis resolves. Course participants learn about adolescent development, the signs and symptoms of the common and disabling mental health problems in young people, where and how to get help when a young person is developing a mental illness, what sort of help has been shown by research to be effective, and how to provide first aid in a crisis situation.

Developing mental health problems covered are:

  • Depression
  • Anxiety problems
  • Psychosis
  • Substance use problems
  • Eating disorders

Mental health crisis situations covered are:

  • Suicidal thoughts and behaviours
  • Non-suicidal self-injury (sometimes called deliberate self-harm)
  • Panic attacks
  • Traumatic events
  • Severe effects of drug or alcohol use
  • Severe psychotic states
  • Aggressive behaviours

All MHFA Courses teach how to give the mental health first aid using the MHFA Action Plan ALGEE. More information about ALGEE.

Course Format

This is a 14 hour course, which can be delivered as either:

  • A 2-day training package (7 hours per day), OR
  • As 4 Separate modules (3.5 hours each)

Who can attend a course?

Any interested adult can attend, though please note this course is not for adolescents to attend. This course is also not a therapy or support group, rather it is an education course to learn how to give first aid to others.

The 12-hour Standard Mental Health First Aid course teaches people (18 years and over) how to offer initial support to adults who are developing a mental health problem, experiencing a worsening of an existing mental health problem or in a mental health crisis, until appropriate professional help is received or the crisis resolves. The course curriculum is evidence-based, as informed by the MHFA Guidelines.

Standard Mental Health First Aid

What The Course Covers

Participants in the Standard Mental Health First Aid course learn about the signs and symptoms of the common and disabling mental health problems, how to provide initial help, where and how to get professional help, what sort of help has been shown by research to be effective, and how to provide first aid in a crisis situation.

Standard Mental Health First Aid

Developing mental health problems covered are:

  • Depression
  • Anxiety problems
  • Psychosis
  • Substance use problems.

Mental health crisis situations covered are:

  • Suicidal thoughts and behaviours
  • Non-suicidal self-injury (sometimes called deliberate self-harm)
  • Panic attacks
  • Traumatic events
  • Severe effects of drug or alcohol use
  • Severe psychotic states
  • Aggressive behaviours.

Course Format

This is a 12-hour course, which can be delivered as either:

  • A 2-day training package (6 hours per day), OR
  • As 4 separate training modules (3 hours each)

Course participants receive a copy of the Standard MHFA Manual to keep and a Certificate of Completion.

Who can attend a course?

Any interested adult can attend. Please note this course is not a therapy or support group, rather it is an education course to learn how to give first aid to others.

 

Standard Mental Health First Aid

 

Teen Mental Health First Aid

The Teen Mental Health First Aid Course teaches high school students in years 7-9 and 10-12, how to provide mental health first aid to their friends. The course was developed in response to research indicating that young people have a preference for sharing problems with peers. The course curriculum is evidence-based, informed by a study undertaken to determine the best actions a young person can undertake to support a peer with a mental health problem.

An initial research evaluation of the teen MHFA course found that, after completing the course, participants had improved knowledge of mental health problems and their treatment, increased confidence in providing mental health first aid to a peer, and increased help-seeking intentions. Additionally, participants’ stigmatising attitudes were reduced. More info here.

What the course covers

Students learn the teen MHFA Action Plan, as well as information about different types of mental health problems and mental health crisis situations in young people, and the relationship between thoughts, feelings and behaviours. Rather than focusing on specific mental illnesses, the course teaches participants to recognise when a friend is experiencing major changes in their thinking, feeling and behaviour, that are interfering with daily life and not going away as quickly as expected, as this may indicate the presence of a mental health problem.

Mental health crisis situations covered are:

  • Suicidal thoughts and behaviours
  • Non-suicidal self-injury (sometimes called deliberate self-harm)
  • Intoxication, and
  • Bullying and abuse.

In the program for older students, the focus is on suicide, and involves frank discussion of suicide. A film showing a young man helping a suicidal friend is used to demonstrate how to talk about suicide and assist someone who is having thoughts of suicide. In the program for younger students, crises are not emphasised, in order to be developmentally appropriate, however the same action plan is taught.

What are the benefits?

Prior to the launch of the teen MHFA program, the course was delivered to 1,000 year 10 and 12 students across four schools in the greater Melbourne region as part of a pilot evaluation study. This study demonstrated positive benefits – view the summary of findings.

Course format and delivery

The delivery format is 3 interactive classroom sessions of 75 minutes each, on non-consecutive days. The course has been specifically designed to be engaging for this age group, and uses videos, group discussions and activities.

Who can attend a course?

The teen MHFA Course can only be taught to Years 7-9 and 10-12 students in settings which also have Youth MHFA Courses conducted for responsible adults. The Youth MHFA Course teaches adults how to assist adolescents who are developing a mental health problem or in a mental health crisis. However, it does not have to be taught in school settings. Sports clubs, juvenile justice settings and service organisations are all using the training and finding it successful and relevant.

It does need to be provided to the entire group. This means, for example, every year ten student, or everyone on the team, or every young person in the setting. If a smaller group is taught, they can see themselves as having a new responsibility. Instead, our aim is to provide every young person with the skills they need to assist a friend.

Older Persons Mental Health First Aid

What is the Older Person Mental Health First Aid course?

This 12-hour course teaches adults how to provide mental health first aid to the older person (65+). Mental health first aid is the help provided to a person who is developing a mental health problem, experiencing a worsening of an existing mental health problem or in a mental health crisis. The first aid is given until the appropriate professional help is received or the crisis resolves. Curriculum content is evidence-based, informed by the input of mental health professionals, researchers, carers and consumer advocates.


Course content
Course participants learn about the signs and symptoms of the common mental health problems in older people, how to offer initial help, where and how to get professional and other help, what sort of help has been shown by research to be effective, and how to provide first aid in a crisis situation.

Mental health problems
• Depression
• Anxiety problems
• Confusion and dementia
• Psychosis

Mental health crises
• Suicidal thoughts and behaviours
• Panic attacks
• Delirium
• Unsafe behaviours due to confusion – wandering, unsafe to drive and unsafe in current place of residence
• Challenging behaviours due to confusion.

This course offers a highly interactive learning experience and the opportunity to apply MHFA skills through the use of films, role-plays and scenarios.


Why the Older Person Mental health First Aid course?

In older age, mental illnesses can particularly occur in association with physical illnesses, loss of independence, bereavement and brain changes that occur with ageing.

Mental health problems are under-diagnosed and under-treated in this population, often misattributed to ageing or poor physical health. Stigma and poor mental health literacy in family and carers of older Australians are likely to contribute to the lack of supportive interactions, diagnosis and treatment of mental health problems.

The aim of the Older Person MHFA Course is to train the community to respond appropriately as early as possible to older people developing mental health problems, rather than wait for a mental health crisis before taking action.

Course Format
This is a 12-hour course, which can be delivered as either a 2-day course (6 hours + lunch breaks per day), OR 4 separate training modules (3 hours each). Course participants receive a copy of the Older Person MHFA Manual to keep and a Certificate of Completion.

Who can attend an Older Person MHFA course?

Any interested adult, particularly those who work or live with older people, can attend. Please note this course is not a therapy or support group, rather it is an education course to learn how to give first aid to others.

Why attend an Older Person MHFA course?

As a participant you will gain improved knowledge of mental illnesses and their interventions, knowledge of appropriate first aid strategies, and confidence in providing first aid to individuals with a mental health problem.

How do I sign up for a course?

If you wish to book a course for a workplace or a community, or have an enquiry, contact us to discuss your needs.

How do I become an Accredited Mental Health First Aider?

Participants who complete this training are eligible to complete an online Accreditation Assessment in order to receive a Mental Health First Aider Certificate of Accreditation valid for 3 years.
MHFA Australia offers an expansive and growing suite of online, blended and face-to-face courses teaching participants how to appropriately apply MHFA skills to varying populations and target groups. Populations include adults, youth and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders. Target groups include the suicidal person, white collar workers, lawyers, pharmacists and tertiary students. See the MHFA Australia website for more information about these courses.

https://mhfa.com.au/sites/default/files/older_person_mhfa_flyer_web_0.pdf

 


TMH teen - Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) Courses