SPECIAL TO THE COMPASS
HARBOUR GRACE, N.L. — Youth living with mental health issues will be getting a boost through a $16,000 Bell Let’s Talk Community Fund Grant awarded to the SPLASH Centre of the Harbour Grace Community Youth Network.
The grant will provide mental health first aid training for adults who work with vulnerable youth in the community. The SPLASH Centre is a part of the provincial Community Youth Network.
Maggie Snow, executive director of the SPLASH Centre, and Stacy Harris from Communities Against Violence, will be trained as instructors of the Mental Health First Aid for Adults who Interact with Youth program.
“We are thrilled to be able to complete this training and offer this course in the region. We currently instruct Mental Health First Aid Basic; however, this training will allow us to provide specific knowledge and skills to the adults who play a role in the lives of youth we see every day,” Snow said.
She’s excited to expand the Mental Health First Aid services offered at the SPLASH Centre.
“This training opportunity will improve the mental health support and understanding available to youth in our region,” she added. “Youth will know that people have specific training in illnesses and crisis situations that impact that. We hope youth feel better supported, better understood and comforted knowing there are adults trained to help them.”
Once the training is complete, Snow and Harris will offer the mental health first aid training to the community.
“This course should be taken by anyone who plays a role in the lives of youth — parents, guardians, grandparents, teachers, coaches, child and youth care workers,” Snow explained. “We never know when a youth may be impacted by a mental health crisis — so we need to equip ourselves with knowledge, skills and tools to intervene and help."
The course also provides information on mental health problems and illnesses that affect youth in the region every day, she added, and will help provide a better understanding for adults and help to reduce the stigma surrounding mental health issues.
“Bell Let’s Talk is pleased to support the SPLASH Centre’s mental health first aid training program to help youth living with mental health issues in Newfoundland and Labrador,” said Mary Deacon, chairwoman of Bell Let’s Talk, in a press release.
“The 2019 Bell Let’s Talk Community Fund is supporting over 100 organizations in communities across Canada, like the SPLASH Centre, which are making a difference for people living with mental illness and their families.”
Snow is appreciative of the support and excited about the possibilities.
“We are grateful that Bell Let’s Talk saw value in what we are aiming to do for our region - especially in terms of mental health services,” she said. “We encourage everyone to seek out a Mental Health First Aid course - basic or for adults who interact with youth.”
For more information, visit the Facebook page @SplashCentre for updates on training opportunities or email email@example.com.