What is Mental Health First Aid (MHFA)?

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You may have heard of Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) but don’t really know what it involves or if its right for you. I am a qualified trainer for MHFA England and deliver Adult 2-day courses on behalf of Twining Enterprise, let me share a little bit about the course.

Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) is an evidence-based training course designed to follow the same protocol of traditional first aid. Much the same as physical first aid training, MHFA is open to anyone and does not require prior knowledge or experience.

Participants learn how to recognize signs and symptoms that someone might be experiencing a mental health problem and how to sensitively and effectively offer support.

What it does not make you is a professional — just as first-aid training doesn’t qualify you to be a Doctor, MHFA does not make you a Psychologist.

In the workplace, as employers or employees, we are simply not well enough informed about how to recognize the symptoms of mental illness or know how to support a colleague. MHFA will give you the skills and confidence to start a conversation and offer assistance. It will support employee wellbeing and stress reduction therefore creating a happier, healthier workplace.

MHFA covers a range of mental health problems, such as depression, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, anxiety, PTSD and suicide. In the same way as physical first aid has CPR, MHFA has its own acronym, ALGEE which you can utilise in a variety of ways including a crisis or to support someone to start a mental health conversation.

The course is interactive with lots of opportunities to practice skills and increase understanding through a variety of one to one and group activities. At the end of the course you will take away a comprehensive manual which includes information on conditions, ways to support and services.

For more information about modules.

MHFA aims to reduce stigma associated with mental health and support everyone to look after their own stress, support their wellbeing and feel able to speak out if they require support. We do not hesitate to seek treatment for a broken leg, the same should be said for a mental health issue.

And because MHFA is a nationally recognized, certification-based training, participants who successfully complete the two-day programme, gain a certificate and can add Mental Health First Aider to their CV.

Don’t just listen to me though, here are what some recent participants said about the course:

Excellent content and balance of theory and exercises, greatly increased my confidence

Tracy is professional presenter who made everyone feel at ease, so they participated, and this increased learning

Excellent warm, friendly delivery, training was very thought provoking, and I feel able to have difficult conversations

If you want to find out more or attend a course, Twining Enterprise deliver courses directly to employers in their own workplace or open courses that anyone can book onto in their offices in Ealing.

For more information please contact info@twiningenterprise.org.uk or call us on 020 8840 8833.

Tracy Douthwaite

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