Gulf Bend to host first mental first aid training

Nov. 28, 2011 at 5:28 a.m.

Gulf Bend has designed a pilot program to help aid those with mental illness in the area.

The Mental Health First Aid program will train 20 people to improve mental health understanding. The idea is similar to that of CPR classes.

"This important educational effort goes a lot further than emergency intervention," said Shauna Holder, the center's mental health first aid instructor. "It really helps people understand the shroud of fear and misjudgment facing individuals and families who experience mental illnesses and addictions."

The first aid training is a 12-hour long certification course covering how to assess situations, implement interventions and seek appropriate care for individuals living with mental illness.

The training also covers risk factors and warning signs of mental health problems.

Linda Rosenberg, president and CEO of the National Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare, which brought the mental health first aid into the U.S. in 2008, is pleased to see Gulf Bend offer the training.

"We know they will have a great impact on the mental health communities throughout the Golden Crescent and will be key players in improving mental health literacy nationwide," she said.



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