Mental Health First Aid

The new MHFA England Mental Health First Aid Course can be delivered face to face or online.

Train as a Mental Health First Aider (or MHFAider®) and receive three years of certification plus access to ongoing benefits.

This course is ideal for those who want to become an MHFAider® to gain knowledge and skills to spot signs that people may be experiencing poor mental health – and to have more confidence to start a conversation and signpost people on to appropriate support.

In addition to the course you will become part of the largest MHFAider® community in England, gaining access to resources, ongoing learning and 24/7 digital support through the MHFAider Support App®, to give you the tools and knowledge to carry out the role effectively and confidently whether that be in your workplace, a volunteer role, or in the community.

Course Outcomes

As an MHFAider® you will be able to:

  • Recognise those who may be experiencing poor mental health and provide first level support and early intervention
  • Encourage people to identify and access sources of professional or other help.
  • Practice active listening with empathy.
  • Have a conversation with improved mental health literacy around language and stigma.
  • Discuss the MHFAider® role in depth, including boundaries and confidentiality.
  • Practise self-care
  • Know how to use the MHFAider Support App®
  • Know how to access a dedicated text service provided by Shout and ongoing learning opportunities with MHFA England.
  • The course can be delivered online or face to face structured across four sessions.
  • Each session’s content is a maximum of 3hrs 45minutes (though I generally round up to give us 4 hours in case of technical problems or extra questions).
  • Sessions can be delivered over a period of time up to four weeks (i.e. one session per week) – however the ideal is over two weeks.
  • Live Sessions are delivered by Sarah Long – Accredited Instructor Member of MHFA England (and/or Associate Instructor for MHFA England), covering 14 hours of content in total.
  • Learning takes place through a mix of instructor led training, group discussions, individual and group activities.
  • Each session builds on the previous, enabling the learner to gain confidence in supporting others with a Mental Health First Aid Action Plan.
  • Numbers are limited to 16 people per course so that we can keep people safe and supported while they learn.
  • We strive for all learning content to be as accessible and inclusive as possible.

Everyone who completes the course gets:

  • A hard copy workbook to support their learning throughout the course
  • A digital manual to refer to whenever they need it after the course
  • A wallet-sized reference card with the Mental Health First Aid Action Plan
  • A digital MHFAider® certificate
  • Access to the MHFAider Support App® for three years
  • Access to ongoing learning opportunities, resources and exclusive events
  • The opportunity to be part of the largest MHFAider® community in England
Course Outline:

Session 1:
Mental Health First Aid and the Action Plan
The MHFAider® role and self-care
Helpful and unhelpful language
Useful models to support the role

Session 2:
What influences mental health?
What is anxiety?
Crisis first aid
Active listening and empathy
What are eating disorders?
What is self harm?
What is substance misuse?

Session 3:
Applying the Mental Health First Aid Action Plan
What is depression?
What is suicide?
Crisis first aid continued
What is psychosis?

Session 4:
Recovery and lived experience
Boundaries in the MHFAider® role
Moving forward in the MHFAider® role
My MHFA Action plan