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Behavioral Health Care (Do Not Delete)

Youth Mental Health First Aid

 Mental health education can save lives. That’s why Willowbrooke at Tanner offers a free training program to help adults recognize and respond to mental health crises in adolescents and teens.

What is Youth Mental Health First Aid?

Youth Mental Health First Aid USA is an eight-hour, free public mental health education program for adults who work with adolescents and teens, ages 12-18. The program covers:

  • The importance of early mental health intervention
  • Unique risk factors and warning signs of mental health problems in adolescents
  • How to help adolescents experiencing a mental health challenge or crisis

Youth Mental Health First Aid uses role-playing and simulations to demonstrate how to assess a mental health crisis. Instructors will also explain how to provide initial help and to connect young people with professional, peer, social and self-help resources.

What will participants learn?

Youth Mental Health First Aid teaches participants about the risk factors and warning signs for various mental health challenges that are common among adolescents, including:

  • ADHD
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Disruptive behavior disorders
  • Eating disorders
  • Psychosis
  • Substance misuse

Participants will not learn how to diagnose mental health issues or how to provide counseling. Rather, the curriculum focuses on how to support youths who may be developing signs and symptoms of a mental illness or emotional crisis. Youth Mental Health First Aid teaches a five-step action plan:

  1. Assess for risk of suicide or harm
  2. Listen non judgmentally
  3. Give reassurance and information
  4. Encourage appropriate professional help
  5. Encourage self-help and other support strategies

Who should take the course?

The course is designed for adults who regularly interact with adolescents and teens, ages 12 to 18. Teachers, school staff, coaches, childcare staff, church leaders, youth group leaders, law enforcement, volunteers and parents can all benefit from this program. 

If you are interested in hosting a Youth Mental Health First Aid training session at your school, church or organization, please call 770-812-3348 or email kstrickland@tanner.org.

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