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Mental Health First Aid is an 8-hour course that teaches you how to help someone who is developing a mental health problem or experiencing a mental health crisis. The training helps you identify, understand, and respond to signs of addictions and mental illnesses.

This course is delivered by Certified Mental Health First Aid USA Instructors who have completed a 5-day training and meet the certification requirements.



August 27 , Saturday:   Austen Riggs Center, Administrative Office Building,
LMFT, LMHC, 25 Main Street, Stockbridge, MA 01262 (Download map with sign information)

Time:    8:00 am to 5:00 pm, registration & breakfast 7:30 am
Cost:     FREE includes breakfast, lunch, course materials & Continuing Education Credits
              for SW, Nursing, LMFT, LMHC, Substance Abuse and Rehabilitation Counselors
Credits:  8 Continuing Education Credits

Thank you for Volunteering! Note: This is the same MHFA course offered in June so if you have already volunteered with credits you will not be able to apply for credits again.


Questions? Contact Peggy Morse:

Continuing Education Sponsor: Berkshire AHEC
This program is funded in full by: American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (
This program is supported by:      AFSP Out of the Darkness Community Walks in the Berkshires


  • American Foundation for Suicide Prevention - Western Mass Chapter
  • Berkshire Coalition for Suicide Prevention
  • Austen Riggs Center
  • Berkshire AHEC
  • Mass Dept of Public Health - Suicide Prevention Program
  • Massachusetts Coalition for Suicide Prevention
  • NAMI-Berkshire County
  • The Brien Center
  • Berkshire Medical Center


Click HERE for Brochure (pdf) about our course offering
Want more info about the Mental Health First Aid Program? Click HERE for Flyer


1. Recognize the potential risk factors for a range of mental health problems, including:  depression, anxiety/trauma, psychosis and psychotic disorders, substance abuse disorders, and self-injury.
2. Recognize the warning signs for a range of mental health problems, including:  depression, anxiety/trauma, psychosis and psychotic disorders, substance abuse disorders, and self-injury.
3.  Summarize a 5-step action plan to help an individual in crisis connect with appropriate professional help.
4.  Interpret the prevalence of various mental health disorders in the US and the need for reduced negative attitudes in their communities.
5.  Recognize the appropriate professional, peer, social, and self-help resources available to help someone with a mental health problem treat and manage the problem and achieve recovery.
6.  Recognize and correct misconceptions about mental health and mental illness.
7.  Recognize your own views and feelings about mental health problems and disorders.


This course helps anyone who wants to learn how to provide initial help to someone who may be experiencing symptoms of a mental illness or in crisis. This course gives people the tools to help fiends, family members, colleagues, or others in the community.
Who should attend?

  • College/university leaders
  • Educators/school administrators
  • Human resources professionals
  • Nurses./physician assistants/primary care workers
  • Public safety personnel
  • Members of faith communities
  • Social services staff and volunteers
  • Policymakers
  • Substance abuse professionals
  • Social workers
  • The general public - Anyone who wants to provide initial help to family members, friends, colleagues or others in their community.


  • NURSING:  This program meets the requirements for 8 nursing contact hours as specified by the Massachusetts Board of Registration in Nursing - 244 CMR 5.04.

  • SOCIAL WORK:  This program has been approved for 8 Social Work Continuing Education hours for relicensure, in accordance with 258 CMR.  Collaborative of NASW and the Boston College and Simmons Schools of Social Work Authorization Number D 70336-1.

  • LMFT:  This program has been certified by the FDA/CE for 8 hours of professional continuing education for Marriage and Family Therapists.

  • LMHC:  Berkshire AHEC and the Berkshire Coalition for Suicide Prevention are cosponsors of this program.  This co-sponsorship has been approved by NBCC.  Berkshire AHEC is an NBCC Approved Continuing Education Provider, ACEP No. 5585.  The ACEP is solely responsible for this program, including the awarding of 8 NBCC continuing education credits.

  • REHABILITATION COUNSELORS:  The Commission on Rehabilitation Counselor Certification (CRCC) has approved this program for 8 clock hours for rehabilitation counselors.

  • SUBSTANCE ABUSE COUNSELORS:  The Massachusetts Board of Substance Abuse Counselor Certification, Inc. (MBSACC) has approved this program for 8 contact hours for substance abuse counselors in Massachusetts.

Successful Completion Requirements: Participants are expected to sign in and out, attend the entire program, and complete an evaluation. No partial credit will be awarded.

Other Professional Development Credits: For those who would like to submit their course attendance for other professional development credit/contact hours we will be providing a Certificate of Attendance (for full attendance only) as well as a downloadable packet of the course objectives, flyer and brochure that you can submit to an authorizing authority/agency not on the above list (We can not guarantee the credits will be accepted/recognized for other than those groups listed above but we will provide those materials to our attendees for assistance with their professional development)


  • Continuing Education: Certificates will be distributed by mail to participants 6 to 8 weeks after the program. (You will be required at registration to identify if Continuing Education Credits are requested).
  • Special Accommodations (for special meal accommodations/food allergies see "Meal Accommodations" below): If you are hearing impaired, or are differently-abled and require special accommodations please contact Peggy Morse: Email (preferred): or Phone: 413-441-6316 (leave message). Please notify us immediately for special requests (You will be required at registration to identify if Special Accommodation Request will be made). .
  • Meal Accommodations: Austen Riggs will have a selection of Gluten-Free, Vegetarian and Vegan alternatives for our attendees for both the breakfast and lunch buffets so special registration for meals is NOT required. For those with food allergies we can not guarantee that food providers at location have processes in place to remove all chance of cross-contamination during food-prep and serving. If you are concerned you are welcome to bring in breakfast/lunch items to be assured your full needs are met. 
  • Course Cancellation: We reserve the right to cancel a program due to low registration, speaker illness, cancellation or other uncontrollable circumstances. Notice of cancellation will be provided to registrants by email as soon as we become aware of the need to cancel. We will also post cancellation information on BCSP’s website at:  
    (You will be required at registration to agree to Berkshire Coalition for Suicide Prevention's Terms of Service, Policies, Waivers & Agreements).


If you need to cancel your registration: Email Peggy Morse at: or call:  413-441-6316 (leave message) with your contact information and your registered course location. Please contact us prior to August 24th so your seat can be made available to our waiting list attendees. Note: If you do not attend the full course you will not be awarded credit hours (No partial credit hours). Because of cost the training materials are only available to course attendees.