30/06/21, Emily Mitchell

Creating Safe Spaces

Mental Health First Aid

This month two members of our team embarked on a two day Mental Health First Aider (MHFA) training course.

We already have one Mental Health First Aider in the organisation, however it was important to Remarkable to have many points of contact who are qualified to talk about mental health and wellbeing in the work place. Whether it’s having peer to peer conversations, or finding someone you naturally feel comfortable talking to, we wanted to give our employees options.

Hopefully, creating enough safe spaces for our team to be as open and honest as they feel comfortable with, to enable them to talk about their wellbeing.


We already had involvement with See Me, the mental health charity. Through them and the detailed report they produced for us, we felt equipped enough to create an organisational wellbeing group and a wellbeing policy which focuses on everything associated with employee wellbeing. However there is always much more we can learn to be even better.

I had originally heard about mental health first aid courses through See Me and I am now very proud to say, it is one of our Remarkable product offerings. I was delighted to join one of our very own courses, taking in the experience side by side with our clients.  I personally wanted to do this course to help get everyone talking more about their own mental health. Sometimes the stigma behind it makes it hard for people to deal with and they don’t know who to talk to about it, or you don’t know how to handle the conversation when someone brings the topic up. I am determined to change that.

I strive to create a wellbeing culture where people can be open and honest, flourishing in their roles, whilst managing their mental health in a way which suits them best.

 

The course made me realise how many people had experienced mental ill health. We learnt about big topics such as suicide, psychosis, depression, stress, eating disorders and many more, whilst also exploring those smaller but significant fluctuations, which cause individuals to go from a good mental health day to a bad one. Learning about triggers and signs and symptoms to watch out for.  We discussed how certain terminology used in everyday life can increase the occurrences of people not wanting to speak out. Words being used in the wrong circumstances and therefore leading to a greater misunderstanding of illnesses.

The talks were great in helping me understand the variety of topics and I thought it was very beneficial hearing first hand the advice and thoughts from those sat around me. From those who had their own experiences of mental ill health to those supporting individuals within their organisation.

 

In just two days I came out of the course feeling confident in the way I speak about mental health. I feel as though I would no longer shy away from having a conversation about mental health and feel equipped with the right tools to have positive conversations. Thanks to Loretta (our course trainer) and MHFA training, I now have the appropriate skills to talk openly to those feeling like they aren’t having a good mental health day. Help them rationalise their thoughts and sign post them to appropriate resources.

This is such a worthwhile experience and I would encourage anyone who is interested in finding out about the topic to reach out and find out more about how you could become a mental health first aider in your organisation.

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