Mental Health First Aid or should that be More Help For All?
Our Office Manager Rachel recently completed her Mental Health First Aid Training, so we thought what better time to share her thoughts than World Mental Health Day, particularly as this year’s theme is mental health is a universal human right. Here’s what Rachel has to say about this vital training:
“To say I have struggled to put together my thoughts about the Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) course I recently completed is an understatement. I started, stopped, started again and spent a lot of time staring at a blank piece of paper. This is because I want to do the subject justice. The most important point to get across is how important it is for every company to support their employee’s mental health in the workplace. I thought I knew a lot about mental health issues and how to deal with them, especially at work, as I’m an experienced Manager. But through the Mental Health First Aid course I realised, I really didn’t know as much as I thought. Depression, anxiety disorders, self-harm, eating disorders, psychosis, substance misuse and suicide – these are all just some of the mental health issues that as leaders in the workplace we may have to navigate and we should all be educated on how to help our employees effectively and with compassion to build a mentally healthy environment.
As businesses, it’s vital that we are aware of the policies and legislation that surround MHFA. As employers, we have a ‘duty of care’ which means we have a responsibility to do all we reasonably can to ensure the health, safety and well-being of our teams, including of course their mental health. As more and more people are being open about their mental health (which is a great thing!), it makes it all the more important that we know what our responsibilities are, how we can help them within the working environment and that we are able to signpost people to the best possible support services for them.
After completing my MHFA training, I want to shout from the rooftops to encourage all businesses to also undertake the course. If just one person from your organisation were to participate, I promise it would be so beneficial. Among many other things, one of the most important lessons it taught me was that there isn’t a single person on this earth who isn’t affected in some way by these issues, either themselves or through a loved one. So my main aim is to raise awareness for Mental Health First Aid training in the workplace so that everyone realised just how important it is!”