We all have mental health, just like we all have physical health. Poor mental health can strike at any time and can affect people from all walks of life.

Although things are improving, stigma still exists around mental health. As a society, we don't tend to know how to take care of our mental health like we do our physical health. This means not many people know how to support a friend, family member or colleague experiencing a mental health issue, or where to go for support for their own mental health. 

In 2000 the Mental Health First Aid England programme was created in Australia, by Betty Kitchener, an educator and mental health consumer, in partnership with Professor Tony Jorm, a mental health researcher. By 2006 England adopted this training and has gradually spread to many other countries across the globe. 

The course won’t teach you to become a therapist but just like physical first aid, it will teach you the skills to listen, reassure and respond, even in times of crisis.

Learning takes place currently via an online platform with a variety of group activities presentations and discussions.  It is hoped that once it is safe to do so face to face training will return to the classroom.

Learn about MHFA England’s vision and mission by watching the You Tube clip 


With suicide rates continuing to rise in the UK and the pandemic taking its toll on the mental health of the nation, it is more important than ever that people are equipped with the skills and knowledge to prevent suicides and save lives.

Suicide First Aid: Understanding Suicide Intervention

Course overview: 

Teaching the theory and practise of suicide intervention skills that can be applied in any professional or personal setting, captured in a one-day event accredited by City and Guilds of London. We use only the most experienced suicide prevention trainers to deliver this unique learning experience: for anyone who seeks greater understanding and confidence to intervene with people at risk of suicide.

The Suicide First Aid through Understanding Suicide Intervention (SFAUSI) course gives learners the knowledge and tools to understand that suicide is one of the most preventable deaths and some basic skills can help someone with thoughts of suicide stay safe from their thoughts and stay alive.

Course content:

SFAUSI is comprised of 4 parts, each 90 minutes duration. The programme teaches and practices the skills and knowledge needed to identify someone who may be thinking about suicide and competently intervene to help create suicide- safety as a first aid approach.

Suicide First Aid Lite

Course overview:

Teaching the theory and practise of suicide intervention skills that can be applied in any professional or personal setting, this programme is delivered over 3 hours as a suicide prevention awareness session. We use only the most experienced suicide prevention trainers to deliver this unique learning experience: for anyone who seeks greater understanding and confidence to intervene with people at risk of suicide.

The Suicide First Aid Lite (Virtual) course gives learners the knowledge and tools to understand that suicide is one of the most preventable deaths and some basic skills can help someone with thoughts of suicide stay safe from their thoughts and stay alive.

Course content:

SFA Lite is comprised of 2 parts, each 90 minutes duration. The programme teaches the skills needed to identify someone who may be thinking about suicide and to pass the person onto a suicide first aider

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Mental Health First Aid (MHFA)

Why become a MHFAider®? (see flyer)

By training with us you will gain: 

  • A deeper understanding of mental health and the factors that can affect people's wellbeing
  • Practical skills to spot the triggers and signs of mental health issues
  • The confidence to step in and support someone to recover their health by guiding them to appropriate support
  • Enhanced interpersonal skills such as non-judgemental listening 
  • Knowledge to help someone recover their health by guiding them to further support- whether thats self-help resources, through their employer, the NHS or a mix

Mental Health Aware 

This course raises awareness of mental health. It covers:

  • What mental health is and how to challenge stigma
  • A basic knowledge of some common mental health issues
  • An introduction to looking after your own mental health and maintaining wellbeing
  • Confidence to support someone in distress or who may be experiencing a mental health issue

MHFA Refresher 

If you are a MHFAider® you have skills for life to support yourself and the people around you. Just like physical first aid, MHFA training should be kept up to date.

The four hour MHFA Refresher course will:

  • Keep your awareness of mental health supports current
  • Update your knowledge of mental health and what influences it
  • Practice applying the MHFA action plan

SFA Lite 

Tutor-led delivery during a half day course for up to 20 learners teaching the theory and practise of suicide intervention skills. This stand-alone training session, or as the first part of a journey to learn suicide prevention skills, offers the learning outcomes that are knowledge based and factual.

SFA: Understanding Suicide Interventions

Tutor-led delivery over the course of a full day for up to 16 learners.  This is the next step for people wanting a more in-depth practice-based approach to learning.  This is a highly interactive and emotionally engaging learning experience.

Training is easy to grasp for people of all skill levels and those with no prior knowledge of the subject. 

(see flyer)

The last few years have been challenging for everyone in the community, workplace, leaders, employees and those supporting us to be the best we can be while at work, home and with those we love.

Undertaking the Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) England training you will access the very best evidence-based MHFA course available.

With the new offer, MHFA training doesn't stop when the course comes to an end, MHFAiders® receive continuous support well beyond their initial certification so they are confident, empowered and motivated to carry out their role. Click here to see flyer

Individual places can be booked onto one of our open courses (see the table below for future dates) by emailing the team to request a booking form and a price by clicking here.  Arrangements can be made for a closed group for your business/organisation by emailing bchft.mhfaenquiries@nhs.net


Online delivery across 4 half days

9.30 - 1.30pm

18th, 19th, 25th, 26th April 2023 
Suicide First Aid: Understanding Suicide Interventions

Online delivery

9:00 - 5:00pm

Wednesday 5th July 2023



Tammy Partridge-Smith MHFA Business Development Manager & MHFA Instructor Member
Emma Heys MHFA Instructor Member & Suicide First Aid Tutor
Kay Higgins MHFA Instructor Member & Suicide First Aid Tutor
Rhi Thompson MHFA Team Administrator


If you have any questions around Mental Health First Aid then please don't hesitate to contact us on -

Email: bchft.mhfaenquiries@nhs.net


We also post all our updates and resources onto our social media pages, follow the below pages to keep up with what we're sharing! 


Twitter: @BCHFT_MHFA  

Facebook: Black Country Healthcare MHFA

Instagram: black_country_healthcare_mhfa

K.Skelding, Occupational Therapist | Wolverhampton Council

This training exceeded my expectations as it made me think about my own mental health more. I was hoping to gain more confidence in supporting others with poor mental health from a work perspective but from the training I am thinking about the bigger picture which includes my well-being. Mental Health Aware

M.Toor, Administrator | Wolverhampton Healthy Minds

I have enjoyed the Mental health training course. I have learnt so much regarding the tool kit, stigmas etc. I have gained a more knowledge on recognising the different signs of Mental Health. Mental Health Aware

L.Storer, Company Buyer | Nuneaton Signs

I thought attending the course would be completely out of my comfort zone & I would struggle to complete the two days, however within a few minutes of being there both instructors put my mind at ease. Talking about mental health & feelings does not come easy to me but we had such a lovely group it made it very easy to relax and be more open. I have taken away a huge amount from the course & feel confident to apply what I’ve learnt if it is needed in the workplace or other situations.  Mental Health Aware

K.Curphey, Paramedic | West Midlands Ambulance Service

I found the training really informative and well delivered.  It has given me more confidence in dealing with mental health illness both at work and within my family/friends network.  The manual is also really good with lots of information in it, I’m still reading through it, thank you. Mental Health First Aid

Paramedic | West Midlands Ambulance Service

Very informative and well lead course, subjects were covered fully and further discussion was supported and encouraged.  Probably the most useful and informative course I have attended for sometime, coupled with the SFA course attended a couple weeks ago I feel more confident to support others and look at my own well being in more detail.  Keep up the great work both.  Mental Health First Aid


S.McGrory, Secure Bank Trust

The training was a really good reminder of the tools which assist when dealing with situations.  I found the training to be interactive and a good balance of checking understanding along with the trainers supporting with additional explanations. 

I will continue to support colleagues and friends and family using the knowledge I've gain, and should I ever find myself in situation outside of the work or family / friends where someone is in need of support especially life threatening I feel confident I can have the open conversations to hopefully help that person and remove the treat at that specific time. Refresher

E.Williams, Headteacher | Pennyhill Primary School

This was a really valuable piece of training. It provides a clear framework which you can use to support and signpost others. The training manual is well developed so it provides a useful resource which you can keep referring to after the course.  A good list of agencies to signpost people to. Back in school now and I have already used the framework and the handbook for signposting. Youth Mental Health First Aid

Megan Rhodes, PA to Head of Invovement | NHS Black Country Integrated Care Board

I went into this training with an open mind. I have supported friends, family and colleagues alike with their mental health before. The training was very well delivered and we were given space for discussion around hard to understand topics. I feel validated with the techniques I was using before, and feel it has allowed me to develop my abilities further and feel more useful as a result. I feel this training will help benefit me going forward and would recommend it to friends and colleagues. Mental Health First Aid October 2022

Peter Warrener, HR & OD Director | Black Country Integrated Care Board

Thank you for your skilful and professional facilitation over two enriching days; it was really worthwhile. To be honest, I approached the course with some thoughts about how I was going to cope with being two full days “out of the office” but the time almost immediately turned into an investment and was nowhere near the time thief that I had feared. Mental Health First Aid November 2022

Mani Badhan, Training Hub Project Manager | Black Country Integrated Care Board (NHS) Training Hub

The Black Country Training Hub have previously worked in partnership with MFHA supporting Mental Health Full Day Training, Awareness, Refresher and Suicide Training.

MHFA has consistently delivered a high standard of service. Kay and Emma have gone above and beyond expectations including a big emphasis on not only supporting others wellbeing, and how to focus on ‘you’ too.

I have been privileged and attended a couple of sessions with the organisation and will look forward continue working with you in the future.

I have had excellent feedback from a variety or Clinical and Non-clinical professionals and would like this training to be made available continuously.  Mental Health Aware December 2022

Louise Hutchinson, Care Co-ordinator | Dudley Integrated Healthcare

Thank you to both of you for the awareness training today, really enjoyed it being interactive, the case studies and quiz.

I am new to my role so this information and the areas highlighted have really been beneficial to help further develop my knowledge. I feel improving my skills/knowledge will help me - help patients, friends, family, colleagues and my own well-being. Mental Health Aware February 2023

Lewis Timms, Personal Trainer | Better Gym Walsall Wood

I really enjoyed the training provided by Kay and Emma. They were friendly and professional.

The training was well structured and easy to follow. I loved how we were split into different ‘Rooms’ with other participants to discuss questions from the workbook. Mental Health Aware February 2023

Rachel Griffiths, Social Prescribing Link Worker | Dudley Integrated Health & Care Trust

This was such an informative and engaging course. I did not know what to expect and lacked confidence starting conversations around mental health and supporting in crisis situations before taking the course, however I now feel equipped to apply MHFA to real life situations. The content was extensive and each topic was covered thoroughly and sensitively. The learning styles used were powerful in conveying messages around mental health. Both Kay and Emma were excellent instructors and ensured the wellbeing of us as learners throughout the course. I will take away the skills and knowledge I have gained from the course to apply in both my personal and professional life. I would highly recommend this course! Mental Health First Aid February 2023

Jo Garbett, Fire Safety Advisor | Russells Hall Hospital, The Dudley Group NHS Foundation Trust

I wanted to attend this training in order to be able to support my colleagues, as well as learn some techniques to support my own metal health. I found the training thought provoking, sensitive, and delivered well. There was a good mix of media used to present the information, and this has really increased my knowledge around mental health. With the tools provided, I believe I can now support myself and my colleagues and promote good mental health. Mental Health Aware March 2023

CWC-logo-purple.pngKeep Your Head Up campaign

Black Country Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust worked in collaboration with the City of Wolverhampton Council to deliver upon a series of training sessions to raise awareness in Suicide Prevention.  The aim was to deliver the awareness sessions to staff working in in barber shops, hairdressers and nail salons within the city of Wolverhampton. 

The training was part of the local suicide prevention campaign to upskill workforces and communities through information and knowledge enabling them to better understand and respond to poor mental wellbeing and suicide ideation for their clients, colleagues and themselves.

Whilst the training session was a universal intervention it considered that certain sections of the community are more susceptible to poorer mental health and wellbeing, and therefore have lesser protective factors that would help them if they reached a point of suicide ideation.

The method of training selected was Suicide First Aid Lite where learner feedback ratings ranged from a 4/5 out of 5.

Staff and businesses, who have formed a network of Community Wellbeing Champions, and accessed the training are invited to hear from a guest speaker from a range of local services who provide community support across the  Black Country. Held on a quarterly basis, attendees have already heard from The Recovery College, Men's Sheds Association and The Wolves Foundation.  We welcome LGBTQ Wolves to our next session in April; email bchft.mhfaenquiries@nhs.net for an invite.

It is hoped that there is scope for further future delivery of this model in Wolverhampton to build and develop early warning and awareness skills and to network with the other localities across the Black Country for a balanced approach system wide.

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