Mental Health First Aid

2018-2019 Mental Health Awareness and Suicide Prevention Training Programs

Attached please find an updated list of the available mental health awareness and suicide prevention training programs from the Essex County Suicide Prevention Coalition, the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention and the MHANYS School Mental Health Resource Center.

Many programs can be delivered to your school, organization or community with little or no cost to you.  Follow the Essex County Suicide Prevention Coalition’s Facebook page for up-to-date program information and available training sessions near you.

Download PDF here:  2018-2019 Training Programs


Suicide Prevention Coalition offers Training Programs

The Essex County Suicide Prevention Coalition aims to implement community-based suicide awareness, prevention, intervention and recovery programs by providing Evidence-Based and Best Practice training models at low or no cost.

Here are some of the available programs:

QPR stands for Question, Persuade, and Refer — Three simple steps that anyone can learn to help save a life from suicide. Just as people trained in CPR and the Heimlich Maneuver help save thousands of lives each year, people trained in QPR learn how to recognize the warning signs of a suicide crisis and how to question, persuade, and refer someone to help. QPR can be learned in as little as one hour.

SafeTALK is a 3 training that prepares anyone over the age of 15 to identify persons with thoughts of suicide and connect them to suicide first aid resources. Most people with thoughts of suicide invite help to stay safe. Alert helpers know how to use these opportunities to support that desire for safety. Powerful video clips illustrate both non-alert and alert responses. Discussion and practice help stimulate learning. Learn steps that contribute to saving lives.

ASIST is a two-day intensive, interactive and practice-dominated course designed to help caregivers recognize and review risk, and intervene to prevent the immediate risk of suicide. Professionals, volunteers and informal helpers all need to know how to help persons with thoughts of suicide in ways that increase their suicide safety.

Creating Suicide Safety in Schools, or CSSS, is a six-hour workshop for school planning teams that looks at four basic categories of preparedness and additional foundational supports.  Often several schools in a district or an area come together to host the training and each sends a planning team.

Lifelines is an Evidence-Based, whole-school program made up of three unique components: Prevention, Intervention and Postvention. The Lifelines trilogy is based on over 20 years of suicide-in-youth research that indicates an informed community can help to prevent vulnerable teens from ending their lives.

Mental Health First Aid is a public education program that introduces participants to risk factors and warning signs of mental illnesses, builds understanding of their impact, and overviews common supports. This eight-hour course uses role-playing and simulations to demonstrate how to offer initial help in a mental health crisis and connect persons to the appropriate professional, peer, social, and self-help care. The program also teaches the common risk factors and warning signs of specific types of illnesses, like anxiety, depression, substance use, bipolar disorder, and schizophrenia.  There are specific programs for Youth, Adults, Public Safety, Rural, Higher Education and Faith Communities.

If you aren’t sure which training program is right for you or for a free training consultation, contact Shelby at 518-962-2077 ext. 229.  You can also download a list of the available training programs here.

Essex County Residents now certified in Mental Health First Aid!

Congratulations to the newest group of Essex County residents certified in Mental Health First Aid! With the gorgeous backdrop of the lake as the view, they spent all day yesterday in Lake Placid learning about common mental health disorders, signs and symptoms, risk factors, how to recognize a mental health crisis, and what to do to assist a person experiencing a crisis until the situation can be deescalated and how to refer to appropriate treatment.  For more information about Mental Health First Aid, visit

Mental Health First Aid training, along with other mental health and suicide prevention training, is brought to Essex County by a grant through Senator Betty Little‘s office. Without these generous grant funds, the Coalition would not be able to provide community education, outreach, and many other services. Many thanks to Senator Little for making suicide prevention and mental health a priority.

Our next class is Tuesday, July 25 in Lewis. There are a couple spots available if you are interested in attending. Register at

Suicide Prevention Coalition offers three Adult Mental Health First Aid courses

The Essex County Suicide Prevention Coalition will be hosting three sessions of the Adult Mental Health First Aid Course in July; one in Lake Placid, one in Ticonderoga, and one in Lewis.  The Adult Mental Health First Aid course is appropriate for anyone 18 years and older who wants to learn how to help a person who may be experiencing a mental health related crisis or problem. The 8-hour training helps you identify, understand, and respond to signs of addictions and mental illnesses. Topics covered include anxiety, depression, psychosis, and addictions.

Just as CPR training helps a person with no clinical training assist an individual following a heart attack, Mental Health First Aid training helps a person assist someone experiencing a mental health crisis such as contemplating suicide. In both situations, the goal is to help support an individual until appropriate professional help arrives. Mental Health First Aiders learn a single 5-step strategy that includes assessing risk, respectfully listening to and supporting the individual in crisis, and identifying appropriate professional help and other supports. Participants are also introduced to risk factors and warning signs for mental health or substance use problems, engage in experiential activities that build understanding of the impact of illness on individuals and families, and learn about evidence-supported treatment and self-help strategies.

Registration and materials are provided at no cost to the participant, but space is limited and pre-registration is required. Refreshments and lunch will be provided.

Adult Mental Health First Aid – Ticonderoga
Tuesday, July 11, 2017
Cornerstone Alliance Church 
175 Montcalm St, Ticonderoga
Click here to register for MHFA Ticonderoga on July 11 

Adult Mental Health First Aid – Lake Placid
Tuesday, July 18, 2017
Beach House Community Center
31 Parkside, Lake Placid
Click here to register for MHFA Lake Placid on July 18

Adult Mental Health First Aid – Lewis
Tuesday, July 25, 2017
Essex County Public Safety Building
702 Stowersville Road, Lewis
Click here to register for MHFA Lewis on July 25