Mental Health First Aid (MHFA)

Mental Health First Aid is the mental health equivalent of physical first aid. It is an educational course which teaches people how to identify, understand and help a person who may be developing or experiencing a mental health issue. In the same way as we learn physical first aid, Mental Health First Aid teaches you how to recognise those crucial warning signs of mental ill health. 

Mental ill health can affect people from all walks of life but, as a society, we tend not to know how to take care of our mental health. You will learn how to listen, reassure and respond, even in a crisis, and develop the skills and confidence to approach and support someone whilst keeping yourself safe. You will also learn how to empower someone to access the support they might need and help to tackle the stigma, discrimination and shame which are still associated with mental health.

Stress, anxiety and depression are the biggest cause of sickness absence in our society. Mental ill health is responsible for 91 million working days lost every year, at an estimated cost to UK employers of £45 billion, but simple steps to improve the management of mental health in the workplace will allow employers to save 30% or more of these costs.

MHFA England

Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) England is a community interest company and was established in 2009 after being successfully piloted within the Department of Health.

The company provides mental health awareness and skills training and consultancy to a variety of organisations, businesses and communities,  with the aim to help people to develop the skills to look after their own and others' wellbeing and reduce the stigma associated with mental ill health.

MHFA England is the only provider of licensed Mental Health First Aid Instructor Training in England and is accredited by the Royal Society for Public Health.

They facilitate and deliver a number of courses, including Adult MHFA, Youth MHFA and Armed Forces MHFA. Each of the two day courses teaches the mental health equivalent of physical first aid, tailored to the relevant audience. 


At the end of a two day course delegates are qualified as Mental Health First Aiders.


The shorter one day and half day courses are aimed at raising mental health awareness and developing skills to support someone who might be experiencing a mental health issue.

MHFA England training courses give people tools to support themselves and each other, so everyone can talk about mental health and seek help when needed. People are taught to spot the signs of mental health issues and guide a person towards support, as well as how to respond in a crisis, and how to reach out before a crisis happens.

  • Instructor Members provide a safe, inclusive learning environment and are trained to support people throughout the whole course

  • MHFA England training, courses and Instructor Members are continually quality assured, using robust assessment and evaluation measures

  • MHFA England training provides participants with the skills and confidence to recognise the signs and symptoms of common mental health issues and effectively guide a person towards the right support

  • MHFA England’s mission is to help people develop the skills to look after their own and others' wellbeing and reduce the stigma associated with mental ill health.

  • MHFA is an internationally recognised course, taught in 25 countries around the world. There are now over 2.6 million people trained in MHFA skills worldwide

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