Gwen Harper - 30 September 2017

Brighton Lions have got their teeth into a new project, and we’re not letting go!   We want to really make a difference in Brighton, and we’re clocking up hours to raise money for a new training program that will help Jordan River Senior School students recognise and respond to a mental health situation.

Emma Dillon, our partner in this project and a Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) trainer from Save the Children, explains more about the training:

The Teen MHFA Course teaches high school students how to provide mental health first aid to their friends and to get the help of an adult. This is an amazing course which helps students understand more about the impacts of mental health and the importance of seeking help quickly.”

The Teen Mental Health First Aid course, like all the evidence-based MHFA courses, does not aim to take over the role of a trained mental health professional.  Instead it teaches skills similar to a normal first aid course – to improve the ability of a first responder.  Students who complete a Teen Mental Health First Aid course will be able to recognise someone who’s experiencing a mental health crisis, what to do in a mental health emergency, and what suitable professional help options are available.

Said Sandy Menadue, the Principal of Jordan River Senior School:

“It is critically important that as an extended school community we support our students to develop and maintain positive mental health.  To do this, we need to make sure our students are well informed and supported to understand the factors that may impact upon their own and others wellbeing.  We are very appreciative of Brighton Lions contribution toward this effort.”

Brighton Lions is fundraising to pay for the teaching materials for this course, and will also be submitting a grant to Lions Club International to cover the cost of running the course.  Said Brighton Lions President, Chris Gimblett:

“Helping people with mental health challenges is something very close to my heart.  It’s great that so many people are finally talking about mental health, but we all need to know more about it – especially how to recognise when someone is in trouble and needs help.”

Please support Brighton Lions in their fundraising efforts – either visit them at Brighton Market (first Sunday of every month) or keep an eye on their website and Facebook page ‘Lions Club of Brighton Inc’ for fundraising activities.