The Parkes Rotary Club will be sponsoring free Mental Health First Aid Courses at Parkes, Forbes and Tullamore over the next two months.
The courses teach people simple, practical first aid skills for helping someone who is experiencing mental health problems, and will be presented by Phil Worrad, Rural Mental Health Coordinator for the Rural Adversity Mental Health Program.
Participants will learn the signs and symptoms of common and disabling mental health issues in adults, how to provide initial help, where and how to get professional help, and how to provide first aid in a crisis situation. It will cover topics such as depression, anxiety, suicidality, psychosis and the misuse of drugs and alcohol.
“Drought, floods, mice plagues, bushfires and now the rising cost of living are having a severe impact on the mental health of rural communities,” said Robert Shore, President of Parkes Rotary. “There is a need for courses like these so people can continue helping each other.
“I have spoken to people who have done this course previously and they all say it is excellent,” he said. “One teacher said it was the best, most useful professional development she has ever done.”
According to Robert the course is educational in learning how to assist others as a first responder, and not a therapeutic or support group.
Each course is run over two days, from 9am to 4 pm and is open to community members over 18 years of age.
The Rotary Club was successful in gaining a grant from the Rotary Drought Relief scheme to run the courses in Parkes on 2nd and 3rd April, Forbes on 7th and 8th May, and in Tullamore on 21st and 22nd May.
To register ring Robert on 0427 627244 or see Charlie at the Parkes Coffee Pot.