Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) operates in a similar way to physical first aid, and aims to preserve life, prevent further harm, promote recovery and provide comfort.
Organised by Nurse Dawn, the special two-day course offered girls the chance to gain an invaluable qualification as well as equipping them with practical, life-saving skills that can be used every day.
Nurse Dawn said: “Mental health is as important to our overall wellbeing as physical fitness and this week’s course has really helped open up a subject which can all too often be thought of as taboo. Whether you’re an aspiring medic or just a concerned colleague or friend, being able to act with confidence and empathy around mental health issues is an absolutely invaluable skill which will undoubtedly help the girls in their future careers as well as their personal lives.”
From spotting the signs of mental health issues to reassuring someone in distress and guiding them to further support, it was a jam-packed programme with MHFA instructors Carly and Ali who were very impressed by the girls’ maturity and sensitivity when it came to discussing some very serious topics.
First established in the UK in 2007, Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) England is on a mission to train one in ten of the population in these essential skills. Independent research and evaluation shows that taking part in an MHFA course raises awareness, boosts knowledge and confidence in dealing with mental health issues, encourages people to start a conversation with a person who may be experiencing a mental health issue and promotes early intervention which enables recovery.
The course was staged as part of the school’s comprehensive, and much lauded, programme for aspiring medics. The bespoke, two-year programme offers pupils, wishing to further their studies in medicine, dentistry, and veterinary science, a tailored calendar of lectures, workshops, mentoring and one-to-one support to support their application into their chosen branch of medicine.