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City to offer Mental Health First Aid session

Herald-Times - 10/11/2018

Oct. 11--The city of Bloomington and Centerstone are offering a Mental Health First Aid session, a day-long in-depth program designed to address challenges posed by substance abuse and mental health issues.

It will take place from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.Oct. 31 in the council chambers at City Hall, 401 N. Morton St. The free session is first-come, first-served, and about half of the 25 spots are still available.

Participants will learn to recognize and respond to the warning signs of mental illness and substance abuse disorders, and will be taught a five-step action plan to help someone in crisis, according to a news release.

Earlier this year, the city partnered with Centerstone to offer Mental Health 101 sessions in response to a recommendation from the Safety, Civility and Justice Task Force.

Beverly Calender-Anderson, director of the city's Community and Family Resources Department, said the sessions were well-received. In each session, the trainers took time to help participants with additional questions related to their specific situations. In a couple of cases, participants engaged the trainers to do a activity specific to their staff and/or volunteers, she added.

"Where Mental Health 101 scratched the surface, Mental Health First Aid is is an 8-hour training that teaches participants how to notice and support someone experiencing a mental health or substance misuse concern or crisis. It is more skills-based and experiential," Calendar-Anderson said in an email.

Interested individuals should register online at form.jotform.com/82766077572165.

Lunch will be provided. Registration deadline is 5 p.m.Oct. 17.

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(c)2018 the Herald-Times (Bloomington, Ind.)

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