Article By Rubina Kapil, Mental Health First Aid USA
One in five teens has had a serious mental health disorder at some point in their life. And suicide is the second leading cause of death for 15- to 24-year-olds. It’s critical that we help teens in every way we can, and this starts with the teen Mental Health First Aid (tMHFA) pilot program.
Earlier this year, we partnered with Lady Gaga’s Born This Way Foundation to launch tMHFA in the United States with a pilot program in eight high schools across the country.
We’re excited that with support from Born This Way Foundation, the tMHFA Pilot Program will expand to 35 more high schools and train students across the country in the tMHFA Action Plan.
“My dream is that this [program] happens in every school. I’m just so proud of all of you,” said Born This Way Foundation’s co-founder, Lady Gaga when she spoke with some of the first cohort of students to take the teen Mental Health First Aid program earlier this year.
This innovative new peer-to-peer program teaches high school students a 5-step action plan to help their friends who may be facing a mental health problem or crisis, such as suicide, and highlights the important step of involving a responsible and trusted adult.
Learn more about teen mental health, the tMHFA course and the expanded pilot program. Together, we can make a difference in the lives of teens across the country.
High schools selected to participate in the expanded pilot program include:
- Wetumpka High School (Wetumpka, AL)
- McGehee High School partnered with the Arkansas Rural Health Partnership (McGehee, AR)
- East Valley Institute of Technology partnered with Crisis Response Network (Mesa, AZ)
- Livermore High School (Livermore, CA)
- Child and Family Guidance Center (Northridge, CA)
- Marysville High School partnered with Sutter-Yuba Behavioral Health Prevention and Early Intervention (Marysville, CA)
- Sterling High School in Re1 – Valley School District partnered with Centennial Mental Health Center (Sterling, CO)
- Miami-Dade County Public Schools, Homestead Senior High (Homestead, FL)
- Alexander W. Dreyfoos School of the Arts High School and William T. Dwyer High School (Palm Beach, FL)
- Mental Health America of Georgia partnered with Jackson High School (Butts County, GA)
- Des Moines Public Schools Flex Academy (Des Moines, IA)
- Sioux City West High School (Sioux City, IA)
- Union High School partnered with Terry Reilly Health Services (Nampa, ID)
- Paris Union School District partnered with Human Resources Center of Edgar and Clark Counties (Paris, IL)
- Gardner Edgerton High School (Gardner, KS)
- Corbin High School and Corbin School of Innovation (Corbin, KY)
- Four Rivers Charter Public School partnered with the Collaborative for Educational Services (Greenfield, South Hadley and Northampton, MA)
- Genesee Intermediate School District (Flint, MI)
- Vicksburg High School partnered with Kalamazoo Community Mental Health and Sustance Abuse Services (Kalamazoo, MI)
- Northwest High School partnered with NCADA-STL (Cedar Hill, MO)
- Communicare H.Y.P.E.D. for Change (Oxford, MS)
- North Carolina Department of Public Instruction (Raleigh, NC)
- The County of Bergen’s Department of Health Services’ Division of Mental Health in partnership with Fort Lee High School (NJ)
- Maple Hill Jr/Sr High School partnered with Mental Health Association in New York State (Castleton-On-Hudson, NY)
- Ohel Children’s Home and Family Services (Elmhurst, NY)
- Marion L. Steele High School partnered with the Lorain County Early College High School at Lorain County Community College (Amherst, OH)
- Eastwood High School partnered with Wood County Educational Service Center (Pemberville, OH)
- Roxborough High School partnered with Philadelphia Department of Behavioral Health and Intellectual disAbility Services (Philadelphia, PA)
- Canyon High School (Canyon, TX)
- East Austin College Prep partnered with Integral Care (Austin, TX)
- Forney High School partnered with North Texas Behavioral Health Authority (Forney, TX)
- Fauquier High School (Warrenton, VA)
- Fairfax County Public Schools partnered with Josh Anderson Foundation (Fairfax, VA)
- White Swan High School (White Swan, WA)
- Ashland High School (Ashland, WI)