The Family Service Agency, Mental Wellness Center and the Youthwell Coalition are offering free mental health first aid training to parents, teachers and professionals who work with youth ages 12-18.
There are plenty of dates to choose from with training from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. May 4, May 20, June 3, June 15, July 8, July 20, Aug. 10 and Aug. 19.
“It’s been a traumatic year. Youth have been impacted by school closures and social distancing guidelines, and they may not be forthcoming about any difficulties they are experiencing,” said Annmarie Cameron, CEO for the Mental Wellness Center. “Adults can make a huge difference by getting trained on how to respond to mental health concerns in a young person. Our goal is to train 500 additional community members this year.”
Youth mental health first aid gives participants tools to identify when a teenager might be struggling with a mental-health or substance-abuse problem.
Attendees also learn a five-step action plan, guiding them how to offer support appropriately. Training also gives a better understanding of the impact of traumatic experiences on development.
Participants earn a three-year certification from the National Council for Behavioral Health.
Additional information is available at bethedifferencesb.org or by phone at 805-884-8440.
— Annelise Hanshaw