Award nomination for 'passion and commitment' to mental health first aid training at University of Northampton

Nearly 1,000 people in the organisation have taken part in courses to support their peers and public

Tuesday, 11th February 2020, 5:23 pm
Updated Tuesday, 11th February 2020, 5:24 pm

The University of Northampton has been nominated for an award for its drive to teach students and staff how best to help people facing mental health problems.

Since November 2017, the HR and nursing teams have given mental health first aid (MHFA) training to nearly 1,000 people in the organisation and others.

Those efforts have been recognised with a nomination in the first-ever Inside Out mental health awards in the MHFA category.

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University of Northampton's mental health nursing lecturer Emma Dillon (left) and HR business partner Claire Cross, who work together on the mental health first aid training

Mental health nursing lecturer Emma Dillon leads on the training at the university alongside HR business partner Claire Cross.

Emma said: “Providing MHFA training at the university has never been about receiving awards, but it’s great news that our passion and commitment to ensuring good mental health for our community has been recognised with this nomination.

“We’re up against some high-profile organisations, which in itself is testament to how well regarded our efforts are.”

MHFA is the mental health equivalent of physical first aid training, giving people the skills, knowledge and confidence to recognise the signs and symptoms.

The training aims to effectively guide people towards the right support, be that self-help, an employee assistance programme, or professional services.

To date, the university’s MHFA team has trained 136 staff and 600 nursing students on two-day training courses while 213 others have completed shorter training sessions.

Northampton Town Football Club's Community Trust has also got involved in the full, two-day course as have other university health partner organisations.

The other Inside Out nominees include Deustche Bank and Fast Stream and Early Talent (Cabinet Office) - the winners will be announced on March 26.