NAMI Four County is offering a free youth mental health first aid training for persons who work or volunteer with youth who may have an emotional, behavioral or mental health issue as well as care-givers of youth.

The all-day training starts at 8 a.m. Tuesday, May 7 at St. John Christian Church, 700 S. Defiance St. (State Route 66), Archbold. It will conclude by 4:30 p.m.

The focus of the training will be to teach participants how to recognize the risk factors and symptoms typical of a mental health crisis in youth. They will also learn how to listen non-judgmentally and provide reassurance, and how to encourage the person and their family to seek appropriate professional help.

Participants will not be taught counseling techniques. However, they will learn how to recognize a crisis situation and encourage the youth and their family to seek appropriate professional help. They will learn appropriate things to say and do, and how to encourage the family to seek on-going professional help.

Participants will receive a comprehensive, 213 page manual that covers all aspects of mental health disorders affecting youth. The manual explains how to implement the techniques presented during the training.

A continental breakfast and lunch are also provided.

Those who complete the eight hour training will receive a certificate from Mental Health First Aid USA that is valid for two years. And, eight hours of free social worker continuing education credit will be given to social workers and other licensed professionals whose credentialing board accepts social work CEUs.

The training is underwritten in part by a grant from the Promedica Defiance Hospital Foundation and the cost of the trainers, who are part of the Maumee Valley Guidance Center prevention staff, is paid by the Four County ADAMhs Board.

Although the training is free, space is limited. So, anyone wishing to attend is encouraged to register as soon as possible. The registration deadline is Monday, April 29.

To register, please contact Lou Levy by email at louandrene@artelco.net with your name, phone number, email address, occupation and employer. Or, you can call Lou Levy at 419-393-2515.