Farmscape for August 20, 2019
The Executive Director of the Do More Agriculture Foundation says mental health first aid certification provides a front line response for those facing a mental health crisis.
The Do More Agriculture Foundation, in partnership with Farm Credit Canada, has extended and expanded a program under which rural and agricultural communities can access mental health first aid training.
Do More Agriculture Foundation Executive Director Adelle Stewart says the application process is just now being finalized.
Clip-Adelle Stewart-Do More Agriculture Foundation:
It is really like physical first aid, that everybody is pretty familiar with, which is the first line of response responding to a crisis until somebody can access appropriate medical resources.
The same as if someone was applying CPR until the paramedics arrived, someone who's trained in mental health first aid can provide support and assistance to somebody maybe experiencing a panic attack until paramedics can arrive.
It doesn't ask anybody to become a counselor.
There's no counseling involved but it gives them the tools to identify mental health concerns and then be that first line of response into accessing resources for a person experiencing a crisis.
It is really utilized almost even in day to day lives.
We've heard feedback from people who actually have come right up to me and said, "I've had my physical first aid for 10 years and I've never had to use it and, after receiving my mental health first aid certification, I used it when I walked out of the room."
It can really help people, not only in crisis but just understanding mental health and understanding signs and symptoms, coping and resources to start to address and have conversations earlier within ourselves, our families, our communities and the likes of that.
Stewart says the knowledge empowers trainees to be able to start the really hard conversations.
She says it's not only hard for the person who might be struggling with mental illness but it can be equally daunting to start the conversations to see if somebody needs help.
For more information visit domore.ag.
For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.
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