Tuesday 10 May 2022

Mental Health First Aid (May 2022)

Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) is an internationally recognised training course which teaches people how to spot the signs and symptoms of mental ill health and provide help on a first aid basis. This course is being delivered online exclusively for staff working within student accommodation, and will enable networking and sharing of experiences with peers operating in this distinctive sector.

MHFA won’t teach you to be a therapist, but just like physical first aid, it will teach you to listen, reassure and respond, even in a crisis. This course is aimed at staff working in the student accommodation sector, giving you an opportunity to discuss mental health in that context with peers with similar experiences. It also provides an opportunity for networking.



Session 1

Individual learning (1 hour to be undertaken before the Live sessions begin):

  • Introduction to the Online Mental Health First Aid course and the Online Learning Hub (course overview, safety procedure, attending live sessions, and completing individual learning activities)
  • Activity 1: Why Mental Health First Aid?
  • Activity 2: The Mental Health First Aid action plan
  • Activity 3: What is mental health?
  • Activity 4: Quiz: Impact of mental health
  • Activity 5: Stress Container (completed after live session)
  • Activity 6: Frame of Reference (completed after live session)

Live session (2 hours 30 minutes): Tuesday 10th May 2022 10.00 – 13.00

  • Introduction to course functions
  • Introduction to the course
  • ALGEE and mental health introduction recap
  • Stigma
  • Risk and protective factors
  • 10 minute break
  • Frame of Reference
  • The Mental Health Continuum
  • Introduction to the Stress Container

Session 2

Individual learning (2 hours to be undertaken before next Live sessions):

  • Activity 7: What is depression?
  • Activity 8: Risk factors for depression
  • Activity 9: Mental Health First Aid for depression
  • Activity 10: Introduction to suicide

Live session (2 hours 30 minutes): Thursday 12th May 2022 10.00 – 13.00

  • Recap of individual learning on depression
  • Prevalence of suicide
  • Suicide, substance misuse and dual diagnosis
  • Analyse the impact of suicidal feelings
  • Recap of ALGEE and risk factors for suicide
  • Explain Mental Health First Aid action plan 1 for suicide
  • 10 minute break
  • Explain non-judgemental listening, Empathy video
  • Practice using ALGEE in case study scenarios
  • Review of ALGEE for suicide and depression
  • Self-care

Session 3

Individual learning (2 hours – to be undertaken before next Live Sessions):

  • Activity 11: What is anxiety?
  • Activity 12: Mental Health First Aid for anxiety
  • Activity 13: What are eating disorders?
  • Activity 14: Mental Health First Aid for eating disorders
  • Activity 15: What is self-harm?
  • Activity 16: Mental Health First Aid for self-harm
  • Activity 17: What are personality disorders?

Live session (2 hours 30 minutes):  Tuesday 17th May 2022 10.00 – 13.00

  • Recap of individual learning on anxiety
  • Recap of the five basic steps of ALGEE for anxiety
  • Explain action 1 for anxiety
  • How to support someone who is having a panic attack
  • Explain crisis first aid
  • Practice action 2: non-judgemental listening
  • 10 minute break
  • Practice applying the Mental Health First Aid action plan for anxiety
  • Explain cognitive behavioural therapy
  • Recap of eating disorders and self-harm
  • Case study for eating disorders and self-harm
  • Review ALGEE for eating disorders and self-harm

Session 4

Individual learning (2 hours – to be taken before next Live session):

  • Activity 18: What are psychosis, schizophrenia and bipolar disorder?
  • Activity 19: Risk factors for psychosis
  • Activity 20: Mental Health First Aid for psychosis
  • Activity 21: Helpful and unhelpful responses
  • Workbook Activity 10: My action plan for using Mental Health First Aid (completed after live session)

Live session (2 hours 30 minutes): Thursday 19th May 2022 10.00 – 13.00

  • Review of individual learning on psychosis
  • Explain the development of symptoms of psychosis
  • Review the five steps of ALGEE for psychosis
  • Group discussion about MHFA Australia psychosis video
  • Case study activity using Mental Health First Aid action plan for psychosis
  • 10 minute break
  • Recovery
  • Explore how to build a mentally healthy workplace
  • Start action plan to use Mental Health First Aid
  • Feedback



The training will be delivered by:

Vic Peckitt, Code and Complaints Investigator for the National Code
Vic Peckitt is the Code Complaints Investigator for the National Code and Unipol Code.  Vic went to university in Liverpool and Leeds and has over ten years of experience working within the Student Accommodation sector.  She has been with Unipol since 2015, enjoying roles in Housing Management and Tenancy Support.  Vic is also an accredited Mental Health First Aid Instructor.  


Jan Hardy, Tenancy Support and Wellbeing Coordinator for Unipol Student Homes
Jan joined Unipol in 2018 as the Tenancy Support & Wellbeing Coordinator managing Mental Health & Wellbeing.  A key element of the role is supporting tenants to address challenges, using mediation techniques for tenant disputes, providing information, support and referrals for students with mental ill health, dealing with anti-social behaviour, supporting students affected by crime and managing neighbourhood complaints. Jan has worked in the social care sector for over 30 years, covering everything from Child Protection to Youth Justice, Vulnerable Adults and the Military, building an extensive skill and knowledge base.  Jan has been a Mental Health First Aider for almost 10 years and has been a trainer for 3 years.  




This online course qualifies you as a Mental Health First Aider, and all participants will gain:

  • An in-depth understanding of mental health and the factors that can affect wellbeing
  • Practical skills to spot the triggers and signs of mental health issues
  • Confidence to step in, reassure and support a person in distress
  • Enhanced interpersonal skills such as non-judgemental listening
  • Knowledge to help someone recover their health by guiding them to further support - whether that’s self-help resources, through their employer, the NHS, or a mix
  • The opportunity to learn and develop amongst peers working within the student accommodation sector, sharing experiences and networking

Everyone who completes the course will receive:

  • A certificate of attendance to say you are a Mental Health First Aider
  • A manual to refer to whenever you need it
  • A quick reference card for the Mental Health First Aid action plan
  • A workbook including a helpful toolkit to support your own mental health

Important Booking Information

Having been adapted for online learning, the course is delivered virtually over 4 ‘live’ sessions. There is also 8 hours of additional independent learning (homework) that participants must undertake before and in between the live session, please read the agenda carefully for full details. In order to receive the MHFA qualifcation, participants must attend all 4 live sessions and also complete the required online independent learning.

All course materials will be delivered by post to the address you put on your booking form.  To enable us to make sure they reach you in time, the closing date for registering is midday Tuesday 26th April. The course is limited to 12 participants.

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