Free mental health training courses launched in Breckland
The Breckland Mental Health Community Partnership Mindful Town project has launched a series of free mental health champion training courses for local volunteers.
Funded by Breckland Council Inspiring Communities programme, the Mindful Towns scheme offers free mental health education and training options for up to 100 volunteers from community organisations and small businesses across the district.
The local training programmes will be delivered by Norfolk and Waveney Mind, YANA, the rural mental health charity Wellbeing Norfolk and Waveney. Over the past six months over 150 new mental health community champions have been trained by the scheme.
The Mindful Towns new training programmes focusses on helping volunteers increase their mental health awareness and teaching participants how to hold safe conversations with someone in need and signpost onto appropriate support. The overall intention is to provide a community led ‘grass roots’ layer of early mental health intervention across the district.
Twelve new free training dates for summer 2022 and spring 2023 are now available to book online at www.breckland.gov.uk/mindfultowns. The free training programme also includes two new courses exploring ‘suicide prevention’ and ‘managing mental health in the workplace.’
Alison Webb, Executive Member for Health & Communities, commented: “Mental health truly matters and is no longer the taboo subject it once was in our society. I believe it is our unique relationships with one another in the community and workplace that can make all the difference in supporting and signposting our friends, colleagues, or neighbours to the get right support when it is needed most. Our mental health champions are already making a massive difference, and I look forward to more champions joining their ranks, helping even more people every day within our community.”
Melina Raker from YANA, the rural mental health support charity, commented: “ We applaud the Breckland Council’s unique initiative, knowing that there is great strength in collaboration between charities and local organisations. Together, we will undoubtedly be able to make a real difference to the well-being of our communities. YANA is pleased to be working with Breckland in providing fully funded MH First Aid training for those in rural businesses.”
Sonja Chilvers, chief operating officer from Norfolk and Waveney Mind commented: “We are delighted to be working with Breckland Council and the other members of the Breckland Mental Health Community Partnership to bring mental health awareness and training to the communities of Breckland, and are especially delighted to hear that 150 new mental health community champions have been trained by the scheme in the last six months.”
“Through our education and awareness training we hope to empower local businesses and community volunteers to better understand mental health, how it can affect overall wellbeing, the potential triggers and signs of mental health issues, and how best to signpost residents to the range of support available.
“We work to ensure that no one in Norfolk and Waveney has to face a mental health problem alone and partnerships like this enable us to reach far more people, helping to build healthier, more resilient communities.”