100 Year Ten students from Scone High School and Scone Grammar combined to complete Teen Mental Health First Aid training this week.
Melbourne’s Geoff Ahern, one of Australia’s leading practitioners in Mental Health First Aid training took students through the course over three days, teaching them the signs and symptoms of mental illness and how they can help each other.
Ahern said students showed a particular interest in discussions around suicide, with one session yesterday entirely devoted to the topic.
“There are teachers and parents who worry that we have these conversations, but we know that people aged between 16-24 are thinking about suicide more than any other age group and the worst thing you can do is ignore it,” Ahern said.
“The conversations we’ve been having are reassuring teenagers that it’s ok to address sticky issues like mental health and suicide.”
Ahern is particularly pleased that so many parents in the Upper Hunter have taken advantage of the free Youth Mental Health First Aid training provided by Where there’s a Will.
“This multi-pronged approach that people in the Upper Hunter are taking to mental health is just so important and is unlike anything I’ve ever seen before.
“Teenagers and parents now have a common language to talk about mental health and that can only have a positive impact on the wellbeing of people across the district.”