Mental health first aid is designed to support people who experience ill mental health. The person who is trained as a Mental Health First Aider is able to help someone who is experiencing mental health issues as well as try to prevent, or help during a mental health crisis. It is worth mentioning that Mental Health First Aider is not someone who prescribes treatment or determines diagnosis. The MHF Aider role is very similar to a physical first aider. For instance, if you saw someone who has broken a leg, you would give first aid until the paramedics stepped in, but not continue treatment. Mental Health First Aid is designed to follow the exact same process – you support the individual, and assist with the situation until professional care can be administered. Mental health first aid training gives you structure and strategies to utilise if you encounter someone who experiences depression, distress, psychosis, and other psychological conditions. After the course you will be able to better identify symptoms like depression, anxiety, suicidal behavior, eating disorders, self- harm, psychosis etc. You will be able to react in a supportive way, ask the right questions, with a view to de-escalating the situation. It is very handy ‘toolkit’ to have. Everyone has mental health, whether they are in your workplace, school, or family. So what would you do if you saw someone in distress? The training provides with the detailed plan – this is called the ALGEE action plan. The acronym stands for Approach, Listen, Give support, Encourage to seek professional support, Encourage support others. The course itself is interesting and interactive. The delegates participate in various role play scenarios and case studies. You will learn interesting and relevant statistics around mental health – for example, did you know that in the UK more people die because of poor mental health (suicide) than in a car accident? Who is it for? Mental Health First Aid Training is for everyone. First of all it is for you. It helps to look after your own mental health and help yourself. You will feel more confident to speak about mental health issues with your family members, work colleagues and even strangers. If your work environment is very social you might want to consider becoming a Mental Health First Aider. Other areas where mental health training is useful are: working as a teacher, manager, police officer, nurse, social worker or any other professional. How to get mental health training? Look for the training location and dates on www.sirentraining.co.uk or firstaidcourselondon.com You can book yourself on a public course, or book a group for your workplace. If you are looking to book a course, make sure that you receive an official MHFA England certificate. MHFA England is the only organisation who is licensed to train instructors and provide a certificate that is recognised in the workplace. There are 3 types of Mental Health First Aid training – 2 day Mental Health First Aid (this course will certify you as a Mental Health First Aider), 1 day Mental Health First Aid (this course will teach you ALGEE action plan, but you are not certified as a Mental Health First Aider), Half Day Mental Health First Aid Course (the course designed purely to raise awareness around mental health). If you have just started researching about the Mental Health Training, you may find the process confusing. You will find tons of companies who provide Mental Health First Aid training. So how do you choose the right provider? The only company who trains trainers is MHFA England. The same trainers work across different training providers. The main criteria choosing Mental Health First Aid Training are date, location and price. Essentially, you get the same certificate whether you booked with company A or B,C,D.