Mental Health Promotion
Mental health promotion is a public health concept of primary prevention. It seeks to foster individual competencies, resources, and psychological strengths, and to strengthen community assets to prevent mental disorder and enhance well-being and quality of life for people and communities.
Mental health awareness promotion is designed to increase knowledge and skills of mental health risk factors, warning signs and provide connections to support services. Mental health promotion activities also seek to reduce stigma regarding seeking help for mental health challenges.
*Mental Health First Aid (MHFA)*
MHFA is an 8-hour face-to-face course that trains participants how to help someone who is developing a mental health problem or experiencing a mental health crisis. The training includes: risk factors and warning signs of mental health problems; information on depression, anxiety, trauma, psychosis, and addiction disorders; a 5-step action plan to help someone developing a mental health problem or in crisis; and where to turn for help – professional, peer, and self-help resources. MHFA teaches about recovery and resiliency – the belief that individuals experiencing these challenges can and do get better, and use their strengths to stay well.
Training for educators is funded by the State of Texas. School districts may contact your Local Mental Health Authority to request free training in Mental Health First Aid, http://dshs.texas.gov/mhsa/lmha-list or contact your Education Service Center or TEA’s Division of Highly Mobile and At-Risk Student Programs for more information.
To help children and youth respond with confidence to life’s challenges and opportunities, we must help them to be mentally healthy and resilient. School is one of the places where this care can be delivered, promoting the mental wellness that improves students’ ability to learn. Schools are at the intersection of many systems, from the local to the state level. With members from a many of these sectors, your partnership will be able to address the multifaceted mental health needs of children, youth, and their families—and take action to provide essential programs and services.
This free training course developed by Texas consists of 6 modules which educate participants about the behavioral health needs of people who have an IDD The entire online course takes approximately 4 hours to complete; however you can take modules on a self-paced schedule. You can print a certificate at the end of all modules. The modules included in this course are:
1. Co-occurring disorders: IDD and Mental Illness
2. Trauma informed care for individuals with IDD
3. Functional Behavior Assessment and Behavior Support
4. Overview of genetic syndromes associated with IDD
5. Overview of medical diagnoses associated with IDD
6. Putting it all together: Supports and strategies for direct service workers
Speak Your Mind Texas Campaign Speak Your Mind Texas is an outreach and public awareness campaign, the goal of which is to reduce stigma around mental illness and substance use disorders by educating youth, young adults, and their supporters, about the warning signs of mental illness and substance use disorders, the effectiveness of treatment in recovery, and the services that are available for those who need help. Community Conversations have been held around Texas to help in these efforts. By visiting the Speak Your Mind Texas website, users will have access to templates, guidelines and materials to be able to host their own community conversations. These conversations can build awareness and support around mental health issues. A toolkit for Community Conversations will soon be developed, which will be a step-by-step guide for organizing and planning conversations, recruiting conversation participants, and identifying steps participants may want to take in order to raise awareness about mental health. It will be a sustainable method to help both organizers and participants promote mental health and access to treatment and recovery services within their communities.