With the number of people experiencing mental health issues at an all time high (1.5 million people in the UK were in contact with mental health services at the end of January and in January 370,607 new referrals were made), there is a desperate need for increased awareness and understanding of mental health and mental ill health.
Mental Health First Aid Training is a powerful, insightful training that helps to increase mental health literacy, give people the skills to take better care of their mental health and wellbeing; and equip people to be able to support their friends, family members and colleagues.
Within an organisational setting, Mental Health First Aid training is essential. In every organisation, no matter the type, size, or nature of the business - there should be some people (or 1 person!) that have undertaken mental health first aid training. It's not enough on its own - that's for sure - there really does need to be a framework and support in place around mental health first aiders.
And - it's a good place to start.
People that have completed mental health first aid training can, in an organisational setting, be the beginnings of a meaningful, healthy, workplace wellbeing culture. They can give voice to policy, help to challenge and break down stigma, and ultimately play an important role in creating a culture of psychological safety and health.
This should not be regarded as a 'nice thing to do'. It should be a fundamental part of the strategy of every business - part of the fabric of every organisation. There should be a budget (that is relative and appropriate) for workplace mental health and wellbeing. If there isn't, I guarantee that mental ill health is costing your business dearly. The Deloitte Mental Health and Employers report of 2022 very clearly illustrate the huge cost of mental ill health to UK employers - £53-56 billion per year. That equates to around £2200 per person employed, per year, for the average business.
The research also shows that employers will see a significant return on investment into workplace mental health and wellbeing initiatives - as much as 8:1 for proactive interventions like workplace mental health training. So - there is a fantastic business case for investment into the right interventions.
Mental Health First Aid training is not just for people that work in businesses - it is for everyone. It is for self employed people, stay at home parents. All people. Mental Health First Aid training helps people understand the innate nature of mental health, it helps people to understand how to support the people they care about, what to do in a crisis situation, and most importantly - how to better take care of themselves.
Best, The MHIB Team