Covid-19 - Resources to support children’s wellbeing and education for schools, parents and carers

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Youth Mental Health First Aid Training

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Youth Mental Health First Aid (YMHFA) Training

The Youth Mental Health First Aid Training is an evidence based course certified by Mental Health First Aid England.

The Youth Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) course is for anyone who works with, lives with or supports young people aged 8-18yrs and is filled with information and resources to help young people with their mental health and wellbeing. We believe anyone who comes into contact with young people has the opportunity to play an active role in supporting their mental wellbeing.

You will develop the skills and confidence to spot the signs and symptoms of mental health issues in a young person, offer first aid and guide them towards the support they need. Evidence says that in doing so, you can speed up a young person’s recovery, stop issues from developing into a crisis, and ultimately save lives.

But more than that, by giving you the information and skills to look after your own mental health, we want you to set an example for young people. We want you to be able to show young people that mental ill health is a part of life in just the same way as physical ill health, that it’s OK to talk about and it’s OK to ask for help. By giving you the tools to open up these conversations, we hope to empower you to create a mentally healthy, supportive environment in your family, school, peer group, youth group or community and create a culture where talking about feelings is the norm, and stigma associated with mental health is reduced.

Let’s create a future where we all know how to look after our own mental wellbeing, so preventable issues don’t arise in the first place. A future where every young person has access to support if they need it.

This course will provide mental health first aid skills, it won't teach you to be a therapist, but we will teach you to appropriately listen, reassure and respond, even in a crisis - and even potentially stop a crisis from happening. 


There has never been a more important time to focus on youth mental health. With 1 in 10 children experiencing a mental health issue at any one time, we need to find ways to support young people.

For those aged 5-19 suicide is the second most common cause of death, and a record number of children contacted Childline with suicidal thoughts in 2016/17. 

In an average group of 30 15-year-olds:

  • Seven are likely to have been bullied
  • Six may be self-harming
  • One could have experienced the death of a parent

Record levels of young people are struggling. Academic pressure, social media, bullying, poverty, lack of availability of professional mental health support – all have been named as contributing to this epidemic of poor mental health in our young people. It’s clear that young people are not getting the support they need. Key figures in a young person’s life – parents, family members, teachers, tutors, carers, youth workers – can often spot when a young person is struggling but may not know how best to help.

Youth MHFA Two Day Training

Our Youth MHFA Two Day course qualifies you as a Youth Mental Health First Aider. 

Outcomes - Youth Mental Health First Aiders have:

  • An in depth understanding of young people’s mental health and factors that affect wellbeing
  • Practical skills to spot the triggers and signs of mental health issues 
  • Confidence to reassure and support a young person in distress
  • Enhanced interpersonal skills such as non-judgemental listening 
  • Knowledge to help a young person recover their health by guiding them to further support – whether that’s through self-help sites, their place of learning, the NHS, or a mix – engaging with parents, carers and external agencies where appropriate
  • Ability to support a young person with a long term mental health issue or disability to thrive
  • Tools to look after their own mental wellbeing 

What to expect

We limit numbers to 16 people per course, with a minimum number of 10 so that the instructor can keep people safe and supported while they learn. Learning takes place across four manageable sessions. Through a mix of group activities, presentations and discussions, each session is built around a Youth Mental Health First Aid action plan.

Session 1
Session 2
Session 3
Session 4

Youth Mental Health First Aid

Depression and anxiety

Suicide and psychosis

Self-harm and eating disorders

  • About Youth Mental Health First Aid
  • Context: England’s child health care policy
  • About mental health – facts and figures
  • Risk factors for mental ill health
  • Protective factors for mental health
  • Preventing mental health issues and promoting wellbeing
  • The Youth MHFA action plan: ALGEE
  • About depression – facts and figures
  • Risk factors
  • Signs and symptoms
  • About anxiety disorders – facts and figures
  • Risk factors
  • Signs and symptoms
  • The MHFA action plan for depression and anxiety: ALGEE
  • About suicide – facts and figures
  • Risk factors
  • Risk factors and warning signs of suicide
  • First aid for suicidal crisis
  • About psychosis – facts and figures
  • Risk factors and warning signs of psychosis
  • Types of psychotic disorders
  • Crisis first aid for acute psychosis
  • The MHFA action plan for psychosis: ALGEE
  • About self-harm – facts and figures
  • Risk factors
  • Signs and symptoms
  • The MHFA action plan for self-harm: ALGEE
  • About eating disorders – facts and figures
  • Different types of eating disorders
  • The MHFA action plan for eating disorders: ALGEE
  • Recovery

What you get to take away

Everyone who completes the course gets:

  • A Youth MHFA manual to refer to whenever they need it
  • A workbook including some helpful tools to support their own mental health
  • A Youth MHFA lanyard and action card
  • A Youth MHFA pen
  • A certificate of attendance to say they are a Youth Mental Health First Aider

Why Train with us?

Licensed - MHFA England is the only provider of licensed Mental Health First Aid Instructor Training in England.

Evidenced Based - Grounded in research and rigorously tested, our courses are developed by experts with input from people with lived experience of mental health issues.

Global Movement - You'll be joining a community of over 2.6 million MHFA trained people in 25 countries around the world.

10 Years of Growth - Our 1,800 qualified instructors have trained over 360,000 people in England.


The Health & Wellbeing Service, Healthy Safety & Wellbeing Service and Youth Offer teams are working in partnership to deliver the Youth Mental Health First Aid course. This course is suitable for all workforce working or interacting with children and young people, including schools, settings, Children & Families Services, 3rd sectors organisation and private providers of service to children and young people.

We have two options available. The training can be booked per delegate or a booking form can be completed to request a group booking for a whole team or groups of staff to be trained.

Places available on our Central Training -

£180 per delegate for settings who have either an SLA with the Health & Wellbeing Service or the Health, Safety & Wellbeing Service

Or £230 for settings with no current Health & Wellbeing or Health, Safety & Wellbeing Service SLA.

To book on the next available course please click the following link YMHFA Training

Group booking - Alternatively we can come to your setting and train between 10-16 delegates e.g. for whole team/service/site/school/cluster of schools or MATs. (2 full days of training).

Costs may vary depending on location and instructor.

To arrange a training event at your location and to discuss the cost please download the following booking form and return to

Please note that you must have a suitable training space to book this option.

For more information about the training and to express an interest in the course please contact us via the following email address  and we will be in contact with you shortly.

Covid-19 - Resources

Firstly may we say THANK YOU to everyone who is working hard during this time to keep children and young people happy, learning, laughing, active and calm at this time of great uncertainty!

We are keen to share tools and resources as best we can, to support children’s wellbeing and education over this period of uncertainty. With this in mind, we have produced a range of advice and free resources for schools, as well as resources for parents/carers in your school.

These resources are updated every week so please check them on a regular basis.

View Resources

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