First aid is the help given to an injured person before medical treatment can be obtained. Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) is a training program that enables a person to give help to someone developing a mental health problem or in a mental health crisis. The first aid is given until appropriate professional treatment is received or until the crisis resolves.
Who should attend?
Mental Health First Aid is a training program for any members of the public who are interested to learn about mental health. It is particularly relevant for those who are likely to come into contact with those at risk of mental health problems such as police officers, prison officers, high school teachers, youth workers, nurses, social workers, occupational therapists, lawyers, dieticians, security officers, rehabilitation counselors, managers…Mental Health First Aid is not a therapy or support group, and it will not make you a counselor, psychologist, or healthcare worker.
A.Introduction to mental health first aid in South Africa: mental health in South Africa; common mental health illnesses and the five step action plan for mental health first aid:
- Approach the person, assess, and assist with any crisis
- Listening non-judgmentally
- Giving reassurance and information
- Encouraging person to get appropriate professional help
- Encouraging self-help strategies
B.First aid for developing mental health problems: Depression; Anxiety; Psychosis; Substance Use Disorder. Topics addressed are: definition, symptoms, causes, resources and five step action plan.
C.First Aid for Mental Health Crisis: crisis first aid for suicidal thoughts, non suicidal self injury, panic attacks, traumatic events, acute pshycosis and aggressive behavior
The training program can be carried-out as six separate modules (3h per module) delivered at a time and frequency that suits your needs or as a two days training program (8h. per day, 16h. in total). It is also possible to deliver single modules.
Instructor training program
The Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) training program may be delivered by instructors who work independently from the MHFA Program, and which are either working for another organisation or running their own business.
A 5 day instructor training program accredits suitable candidates to conduct the MHFA training program in their communities or workplaces. Most participants choose to become instructors because it is relevant for their job or because they have someone close who is affected by a mental health problem.
Please contact us to register your interest in any of these services or to get further information.