Education and Volunteer Development

This is a community-based program aimed at increasing community understanding of mental illness and issues impacting on mental health. The two main components of this program are community education and volunteer development.

Community Education

Presentations are available on a variety of topics including, but not limited to, stress, depression, schizophrenia, myths of mental illness, suicide awareness and an overview of agency and community services. Workshops provided include two-day applied suicide intervention skills training, stress management, suicide intervention skills update training and consumer/family education. Seminars are generally offered during Mental Health Awareness Week in May and Mental Illness Awareness Week in October.

Information and Referral
This is a service to assist individuals in obtaining information on mental health or illnesses and support services appropriate to their needs. Our library offers a selection of books and videos on various mental illnesses and mental health concerns. Free pamphlets are also available upon request.

Community Development
Consultation is available to individuals, community groups and planning bodies interested in developing or improving current mental health services and supports within the County of Oxford.

Mental Health First Aid

The MHFA Canada program aims to improve mental health literacy, and provide the skills and knowledge to help people better manage potential or developing mental health problems in themselves, a family member, a friend or a colleague. You must be 18 years and older to attend this program.

The program does not teach people how to be therapists. It does teach people how to:

  • Recognize the signs and symptoms of mental health problems.
  • Provide initial help.
  • Guide a person towards appropriate professional help.

Certificates are provided to attendees who complete 12 hours of training. CMHA Oxford hosts 3 to 4 MHFA Workshops each year. Cost is $175 for the 2 day training. Facilitators include Maureen Ralph and Christine Hillis. Group rates and additional training dates for groups can be accommodated upon request.

Please contact Lynn Wardell lynnwardell [at] cmhaoxford [dot] on [dot] ca or 519-539-8055, ext 216 if you have any questions.

ASIST® (Applied Suicide Intervention Training)
The ASIST workshop is for caregivers (professionals, volunteers, students and family members) who want to feel more comfortable, confident and competent in helping to prevent the immediate risk of suicide. Over one million caregivers have participated in this two-day, highly interactive, practical, practice-oriented workshop. The goal of ASIST is to enhance a caregiver’s abilities to assist a person at risk to avoid suicide. By completing the workshop, participants will be able to:

  1. Discuss suicide with a person at risk in a direct manner;
  2. Identify risk alerts and develop a safe plan related to them;
  3. Demonstrate the skills required to intervene with a person at risk of suicide;
  4. List the types of resources available to a person at risk of suicide, including themselves;
  5. Recognize that suicide prevention is broader than suicide intervention and, includes life promotion and self-care for persons at risk and for caregivers.

Participants will receive an ASIST workbook and a Suicide First Aid Wallet Card.

CMHA Oxford in partnership with the Woodstock and Area Community Health Centre hosts 3 to 4 ASIST workshops each year. Cost for participants is $175 for the 2 day training. Facilitated by Janeen Donnor.

Group rates and additional training dates for groups can be accommodated upon request. Please contact Lynn Wardell lynnwardell [at] cmhaoxford [dot] on [dot] ca or 519-539-8055, ext 216 if you have any questions.

Safe Talk ®
SafeTALK, about three hours in duration, prepares anyone over the age of 15 to identify persons with thoughts of suicide and connect them to suicide first aid resources. Most people with thoughts of suicide invite help to stay safe. Alert helpers know how to use these opportunities to support that desire for safety. This workshop is facilitated by Jean Montgomery. Please contact 519-539-8055 ext. 270 for more information.

Addressing Compassion Fatigue
Suitable for helping professionals, first responders and caregivers.

Topics covered in this interactive workshop:

  • You will gain an understanding of compassion fatigue, vicarious trauma and burnout
  • Discovering what are your particular symptoms of fatigue.
  • What personal and organizational practices that make you vulnerable to vicarious trauma and compassion fatigue.
  • Evaluating your current self-care, and identifying triggers
  • Learn how to developing a personalized strategic plan for identifying and treating compassion fatigue
  • Learning how overcoming perfectionism and cultivating self-compassion can help to build your resiliency

This workshop is facilitated by Pat Baigent. For more information contact Pat at 519-539-8055 ext. 215.