Mental Health First Aid is a public education program that introduces participants to risk factors and warning signs of mental illnesses, builds understanding of their impact, and overviews common supports. This 8-hour course uses role-playing and simulations to demonstrate how to offer initial help in a mental health crisis and connect persons to the appropriate professional, peer, social, and self-help care. The program also teaches the common risk factors and warning signs of specific types of illnesses, like anxiety, depression, substance use, bipolar disorder, eating disorders, and schizophrenia.

Mental Health First Aid is included on the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s National Registry of Evidence-based Programs and Practices (NREPP).

COURSE DETAILS

  • Mental Health First Aid teaches participants a five-step action plan, ALGEE, to support someone developing signs and symptoms of a mental illness or in an emotional crisis:
  • Assess for risk of suicide or harm
  • Listen nonjudgmentally
  • Give reassurance and information
  • Encourage appropriate professional help
  • Encourage self-help and other support strategies
Like CPR, Mental Health First Aid prepares participants to interact with a person in crisis and connect the person with help. First Aiders do not take on the role of professionals — they do not diagnose or provide any counseling or therapy. Instead, the program offers concrete tools and answers key questions, like “what do I do?” and “where can someone find help?” Certified Mental Health First Aid instructors provide a list of community healthcare providers and national resources, support groups, and online tools for mental health and addictions treatment and support. All trainees receive a program manual to compliment the course material.

PROGRAM GROWTH

Mental Health First Aid was introduced in the U.S. in 2008 and, to date, hundreds of thousands of people from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico have taken the course. The course is offered to a variety of audiences, including hospital staff, employers and business leaders, faith communities, and law enforcement. Approximately 400 people are being trained each day with that number expected to increase.

In 2012, Youth Mental Health First Aid was introduced to prepare trainees to help youth ages 12-18 that may be developing or experiencing a mental health challenge. And in 2014 two specialized versions were introduced, Mental Health First Aid for Veterans and Mental Health First Aid for First Responders.

Mental Health First Aid was included in the Presidents plan to reduce gun violence and increase access mental health services. In 2014 Congress appropriated $15 million to SAMHSA for training teachers and school personnel in the youth version of Mental Health first Aid; and another $15 million is included in the President’s 2015 budget proposal. The Mental Health First Aid (S.153/H.R. 274) has broad bi-partisan support and would authorize $20 million annually for training the American public. Fifteen states have made Mental Health First Aid a priority, appropriating state funds including Texas that has allocated $5 million.

WHO SHOULD ATTEND:

This training is designed for MSU Extension and College of Agriculture and Natural Resources employees. Each class is limited to 30 people so register early. If you have certified in the last three years you do not need to register. Please notify coordinators so that your training can be confirmed.

Time:

8:30 a.m. - 5:30 p.m. lunch included
Mental Health First Aid training includes 8 hours of content.  If you are unable to attend for the entire day of training, please select an alternative date.  Participants who do not attend for the full day will not be eligible to receive a certificate of completion.

WHEN:

 Adult Program

  • April 9, Van Buren Conference Center, 490 South Paw Paw St., Lawrence, MI 49064
  • April 11, NorthStar Cooperative, 4200 Forest Rd A, Lansing, MI 48910
  • May 15, Michigan Milk Producers Association, 41310 Bridge Street., Novi, MI 48837 (LOCATION CHANGE)
  • May 18, Kent County MSU Extension Office, 775 Ball Ave NE, Grand Rapids, MI 49503
  • May 29, Kettunen Center, 14901 4H Drive, Tustin, MI
  • June 13, Luce County Extension Office, 14126 Co Rd 428, Newberry, MI 49868
  • June 15, Iron County Courthouse,  Board of Commissioners Room, 2 South 6th St., Crystal Falls, MI 49920 (CST)
  • August 7, Michigan Milk Producers Association, 41310 Bridge Street., Novi, MI 48837 (LOCATION CHANGE)
  • August 9, Washtenaw County MSU Extension Office, 705 N Zeeb Rd, Ann Arbor, MI 48103
  • August 29, Northwest Michigan Horticultural Research Center, 6686 S Center Hwy, Traverse City, MI 49684
  • September 21, Brush Creek Mill, 121 State St, Hillman, MI 49746 – not confirmed – waiting for response
  • October 15, MSU Kellogg Hotel and Conference Center, 219 S. Harrison Rd, East Lansing, MI 48824

Youth Mental Health First Aid

Youth Mental Health First Aid is designed to teach parents, family members, caregivers, teachers, school staff, peers, neighbors, health and human services workers, and other caring citizens how to help an adolescent (age 12-18) who is experiencing a mental health or addictions challenge or is in crisis. Youth Mental Health First Aid is primarily designed for adults who regularly interact with young people. The course introduces common mental health challenges for youth, reviews typical adolescent development, and teaches a 5-step action plan for how to help young people in both crisis and non-crisis situations. Topics covered include anxiety, depression, substance use, disorders in which psychosis may occur, disruptive behavior disorders (including AD/HD), and eating disorders.

WHO SHOULD ATTEND:

This training is designed for MSU Extension and College of Agriculture and Natural Resources employees who interact with youth, families, youth volunteers parents and other at risk populations. Each class is limited to 30 people so register early.

Time:

8:30 a.m. - 5:30 p.m. lunch included
Mental Health First Aid training includes 8 hours of content.  If you are unable to attend for the entire day of training, please select an alternative date.  Participants who do not attend for the full day will not be eligible to receive a certificate of completion.

WHEN:

Youth Program

  • April 3, Saginaw Valley Research and Extension Center, 3775 S. Reese Road Frankenmuth, MI 48734 moved to May 7
  • May 31, Van Buren Conference Center, 490 South Paw Paw St., Lawrence, MI 49064
  • June 28, Michigan Milk Producers Association, 41310 Bridge Street., Novi, MI 48837 (LOCATION CHANGE)
  • July 10, NorthStar Cooperative, 4200 Forest Rd A, Lansing, MI 48910
  • September 12, University Center of Gaylord, 80 Livingston Blvd, Gaylord, MI 49735
  • October 2, Washtenaw County MSU Extension Office, 705 N Zeeb Rd, Ann Arbor, MI 48103
  • October 10, Kent County MSU Extension Office, 775 Ball Ave NE, Grand Rapids, MI 49503

COST:

There is no charge for the program. Cancellations must be received 4 business days prior to the class. If someone fails to cancel and no-shows their MSU Account will be charged $125.

TRAINERS: 

Courtney Cuthbertson
Health and Nutrition Specialist
Michigan State University Extension
cuthbe16@msu.edu

Kea Norrell-Aitch
Children and Youth Educator
Michigan State University Extension
knboyd@msu.edu

Abigail Cudney
Health and Nutrition Consortium Coordinator
Michigan State University Extension
ajcudney@msu.edu

For more information or questions about Mental Health First Aid, please go to info@MentalHealthFirstAid.org.

The National Council for Behavioral Health, the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, and the Missouri Department of Mental Health coordinate Mental Health First Aid USA.

Registration for Mental Health First Aid Training is open.
Registration closes at 11:59 p.m. on October 15, 2018.

Accommodations

Michigan State University is committed to providing equal opportunity for participation in all programs, services and activities. Accommodations for persons with disabilities may be requested by contacting the event contact two weeks prior to the start of the event. Requests received after this date will be honored whenever possible.

Contact Information

For more information, contact ANR Event Services at 517-353-3175 or events@anr.msu.edu.