St. John Ambulance launches its new 1-day, peer-to-peer mental health course: Mental Health & Wellness for the Workplace in a virtual classroom, as an instructor-led, online offering.
St. John Ambulance considers it everyone’s business to care about mental health and wellness in the workplace. As co-workers we are often in a position to recognize when someone is struggling.
One in three Canadians will experience a mental health injury at some point during their life. The earlier an injury is detected and treated, the better the outcome.
Intended to equip employees to offer peer-to-peer support for a colleague who’s experiencing a mental health injury, this one-day course helps participants better recognize when and how to act if someone is in distress and guide that person to the appropriate help. Mental health-trained colleagues and managers are best placed to be the first to recognize the signs and symptoms of mental health issues in their co-workers.
This course was developed in conjunction with the TEMA Foundation to help all workers in all work environments to better recognize when a colleague is experiencing a mental health injury.
This course addresses topics such as:
• Reducing stigma surrounding mental health injuries in the workplace;
• Providing participants with skills, comfort and knowledge to better identify someone in distress and feel empowered to take action to offer aid;
• Having difficult conversations with coworkers about mental health, suicidality, and trauma;
• Building healthy workplaces to aid in the prevention of mental health injuries.
Instructors for this course are qualified to handle the sensitive, triggering issues that can emerge when discussing serious mental health issues.
The course is offered via virtual classroom as well as in-class, pending SJA office/branch openings.
“Mental health injuries affect 1 in 5 Canadians in a given year,” says Shawn McLaren, Chief Learning Officer, St. John Ambulance Canada. “As a First Aid leader, it is part of St. John Ambulance’s mission to focus on mental health in the workplace, to improve the health, safety and quality of life of Canadians at work, home and play. As incidences of COVID-19 continue to be diagnosed across the country, we knew it would be essential to provide this course as a virtual, instructor-led offering.”
Other notable statistics:
• Mental health injuries typically account for 30 percent of disability claims and 70 percent of the total costs of disability claims;
• 35 million days are lost each year due to mental health injuries;
• $50 billion is lost in productivity each year due to mental health injuries in the Canadian labour force!
In 1883 Quebec City was the first Canadian branch to teach first aid courses and shortly thereafter courses were being offered in Kingston, Ontario. In the next 10 years, St. John Ambulance grew to be a national organization and by 1892 had 12 branches teaching first aid from coast-to-coast.
Today, in more than 300 communities across Canada more than 10,000 St. John Ambulance volunteers provide over one million hours of community service per year. The financial contribution of St. John volunteers could be calculated in hundreds of millions of dollars. The contribution to safety of Canadians is immeasurable.
St. John Ambulance offers classes at nearly 100 locations across Canada, as well as some online courses.
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