Aims to provide ‘hands-on coping strategies and practical stress-management skills'
The Mental Health Commission of Canada (MHCC) has developed three free crisis response training programs designed to help front-line workers deal with the stress of COVID-19.
The two-hour course “Caring for Yourself” and the three-hour course “Caring for Your Team” focus on understanding, assessing, and improving mental health, both as an individual and within group settings. “Caring for Others,” a two-hour course, focuses on how to confidently engage in conversations about mental health during a crisis, whether it's with family and friends or in communities and workplaces.
"We saw a need and were able to quickly pivot from our usual in-person, in-depth courses, and adapt our skills-based approach to this new context," says Mike Pietrus, director of the MHCC's Opening Minds anti-stigma initiative. "[It’s about bringing] hands-on coping strategies and practical stress-management skills to a community that is doing so much to keep the country up and running and safe."
Participants will be introduced to the Mental Health Continuum Model, the "Big 4" coping strategies, and other tools to foster mental wellness and improve resiliency. The three programs are based on the MHCC's in-person courses: Mental Health First Aid and The Working Mind. Essential workers can apply for the free course here.
In comparing against a benchmark score of 50, which indicates no change from the prior month, Canada's mental stress change score increased to 74.7 in March because of COVID-19.
In the face of the pandemic, 48 per cent of employers are providing unique mental health supports, according to a separate survey by the Human Resources Professionals Association (HRPA) in Ontario.