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HomeTrainingMental Health First AidMental Health First Aid – Inuit

Mental Health First Aid - Inuit

Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) is the support provided to a person who may be experiencing a decline in their mental well-being or a mental health crisis.

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Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) Inuit is a course designed by Inuit, for Inuit and for those who work with Inuit. The three-day course encourages people across Inuit Nunangat to have conversations about mental wellness with family, friends, and colleagues. Addressing the stigma associated with mental health and wellness can be challenging, MHFA Inuit provides a foundation from which participants have an opportunity to learn from their own people in a culturally safe, and competent environment.

MHFA Inuit is delivered by two facilitators to ensure cultural competency. Namely:
• Inuit Nunangat is made up of unique communities with majority Inuit populations
• Community supports are different in each region
• Inuit realities, culture and language can vary depending on community and region

Course model

In the MHFA course, you will gain a solid understanding of the 5 basic actions of ALGEE:

Assess the risk of suicide and/or harm
Listen non-judgmentally
Give reassurance
Encourage professional support
Encourage other supports

ALGEE is the framework for having a confident conversation about mental health with family, friends, colleagues, and strangers

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This 9-hour course opens with a self-directed module (Module 1) that focuses on the information and strategies that participants will discuss and practice throughout the virtual classroom modules (Modules 2 and 3). Course participants are required to complete Module 1 before participating in Module 2 and 3.

Upon registration, participants will receive the “MHFA Participant Reference Guide” that outlines MHFA actions for developing mental health and substance use problems, and mental health and substance use crises.

Key outcomes

  • Increase awareness of the signs and symptoms impacting mental wellness
  • Increase awareness and encourage meaningful discussions about mental wellness
  • Increase confidence and skills to help those dealing with mental wellness concerns
  • Decrease stigma about mental health and wellness

Crisis first aid skills learned

  • Substance overdose
  • Suicidal behaviour
  • Panic attack
  • Acute stress reaction
  • Psychotic episode


Course sections

1. Health and mental health
  • What is health?
  • Historical content of Inuit well-being
  • Intergenerational trauma
  • Protective factors
  • What is mental health?
  • Concurrent disorders
  • Mental health issues and specific groups
  • Recovery and healing
2. Mental health first aid
  • What is mental health first aid?
  • Why mental health first aid?
  • The 5 basic actions of ALGEE
3. Substance-related disorders
  • What is a substance-related disorder?
  • What types of substances do people use?
  • Signs and symptoms of substance use problems
  • Categories of substances
  • Alcohol
  • Risk factors
  • MHFA for substance-related disorders
4. Mood-related disorders
  • What is a mood-related disorder?
  • What is grief?
  • Types of mood-related disorders
  • Signs and symptoms
  • Risk factors
  • Substance use and mood-related disorders
  • MHFA for mood-related disorders
5. Suicide
  • What is Suicide?
  • Why do People Turn to Suicide?
  • Suicide by Inuit
  • Risk Factors
  • Protective Factors
  • MHFA for Suicide
6. Deliberate Self-injury
  • What is Deliberate Self-injury?
  • Why do People Self-injure?
  • Types of Deliberate Self-injury
  • How Common is Self-injury?
  • Risk Factors
  • MHFA for Deliberate Self-injury
7. Anxiety and trauma-related disorders
  • What is Anxiety?
  • How Common are Anxiety Disorders?
  • Signs and Symptoms of Anxiety
  • Types of Anxiety and Trauma Related Disorders
  • Substance Use and Anxiety Disorders
  • Risk Factors
  • MHFA for Anxiety and Trauma Related Disorders
8. Psychotic disorders
  • What is a Psychotic Disorder?
  • Early Intervention
  • Common Signs and Symptoms that a Psychotic Disorder is Developing
  • Types of Psychotic Disorders
  • Risk Factors
  • MHFA for Psychotic Disorders

MHFA Resources

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