The Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service, Wilbarger County and the Helen Farabee Center will offer a free Mental Health First Aid workshop this month.
The eight-hour class is designed to equip participants to help address issues like suicide, drug addiction and mental illness. On average, about 123 people die by suicide each day, according to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicate 630,000 people died from drug overdoses from 1999-2016 and nearly a fifth of U.S. adults live with a mental illness, according to the National Institute of Mental Health.
The class will cover how to identify, understand and respond to signs of mental illnesses and substance abuse disorders. Participants will leave with skills needed to provide initial support to someone who may be developing a mental health or substance abuse problem.
Class topics include common signs and symptoms of mental illness and substance use; how to interact with someone in crisis, and how to connect the person with appropriate help. It’ll incorporate how to apply the ALGEE action plan: Assess for risk of harm; listen nonjudgmentally; give reassurance and information; encourage appropriate professional help; and encourage self-help and other support strategies.
The workshop will take place 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m. Wednesday, March 25 at Wilbarger Auditorium, 2100 Yamparika Street. A light lunch will be provided during the class.
Class size is limited so those interested are asked to call the county extension office at (940) 552-5474 by March 20 to register.