They are the questions that keep a parent up at night.
What if this isn’t “normal” teen-age angst?
Why is my son so sad?
Could my daughter be abusing drugs?
What can I do?
All the research tells us that we are in the midst of an unprecedented crisis, when it comes to the mental health of our children, adolescents, and young adults. Rates of anxiety, depression, eating disorders, and suicidal ideation were already on the rise prior to Covid-19; the pandemic then exacerbated a growing problem.
Heightening the crisis was a scarcity of available, qualified clinicians trained to identify and work with youth experiencing a mental health crisis.
This is why AIM Youth Mental Health is offering Youth Mental Health First Aid Training to help parents, teachers, counselors, first responders, and other caring adults create a community-wide “safe holding place” for youth struggling with their mental health.
Our next mental first aid training will be held on Tues & Thurs July 5th & 7th from 6:00 – 8:30 pm PT. To register, click here.
Similar to how CPR training can prepare someone to help a person in cardiac arrest, Youth Mental Health FIrst Aid Training ensures that youth are surrounded by trained individuals prepared to recognize and respond to signs of mental illness, substance use disorders, and other mental health crises.
I wish I had this training when my own child was dealing with some very difficult issues. I recommend this to anyone who cares about or is involved with teens and young adults.
– Kathy Long, co-author of A Parent’s Guide to Anorexia.
The early intervention, skills-based training has been developed by the National Council of Mental Wellbeing and teaches a five-step action plan to help youth in both crisis and non-crisis situations. Topics covered include addressing anxiety, depression, suicidality, substance use, eating disorders, and other challenges.
The course consists of 2 hours of self-paced content and 5 hours of instructor-led training. Upon completion, adults are certified as Youth Mental Health First Aiders, empowered with tools and strategies to support youth struggling with mental health challenges. The June 10 class will be from 10 am – 3 pm.
The program costs $85 (value $175), which includes the training, course materials, additional resources, and a quarterly “support and sharing” sessions to compare notes and strategies with other Youth Mental Health First Aiders. (Some scholarships are available for people who live or work in Monterey County; call us at 831-372-1600 for details.)
I now feel equipped with simple tools and frameworks to proactively and confidently engage a young person who has shown signs of waning mental health. It can feel difficult or risky to approach someone about their mental health and this course taught me how to open up a healthy conversation with ease.
– Mackenzie Dancho, program participant