Réseau Santé – Nouvelle-Écosse invites members of the Acadian and francophone community across Nova Scotia to sign up for its mental health training workshops. Offered in French, these workshops seek to strengthen community capacity in mental health by equipping members of the community with the skills to help someone experiencing mental health issues. The workshops are delivered by instructors trained by the Mental Health Commission of Canada and LivingWorks.
The two mental health workshops offered by Réseau Santé are:
Mental Health First Aid
Offered in partnership with the Mental Health Commission of Canada, this two-day workshop seeks to provide the skills and knowledge needed to help someone who is on the verge of developing a mental issue or going through a mental health crisis. By taking the training participants will learn to:
• recognize the signs and symptoms of mental health issues
• provide help to someone who is experiencing mental health issues
• guide the person towards professional help
Developed by LivingWorks, a social enterprise, safeTALK is a workshop that teaches members of the community to recognize individuals with suicidal thoughts and to put them in touch with suicide intervention resources. In three hours, participants can learn to provide practical assistance to people with suicidal thoughts.
More than 200 members of the Acadian and francophone community have already taken the workshops, which were offered in a number of communities between 2014 and 2016. Réseau Santé wishes to expand this offer to reach more Acadians and francophones.
“One in five people will experience mental health issues in their lifetime, so mental health concerns us all. These workshops allow participants to recognize and help someone with a mental health issue,” said Paul d’Entremont, president of Réseau Santé. “We would like to train even more members of the community, as it is well established that early intervention improves mental health outcomes.”
The French-language mental health workshops will be offered in regions where there is demand. People who would like to sign up for the workshops that will be held in their community can contact Réseau Santé to register their interest or to learn more. The workshops can also be offered on location to groups, organizations, institutions or businesses, upon request.
Jeanne-Françoise Caillaud, executive director