CNMI ertifies 19 individuals in mental health education program


Community Guidance Center's Leiseschangmwar Iguel and Public School System's Jericho Tobias lead the Youth Mental Health First Aid Training on Sept. 16, 2021, for 10 employees of the PSS - Student Support Services and 2 employees of the CGC's Behavioral Health Response Program. Photo courtesy of CHCC

Saipan--The Commonwealth Healthcare Corporation (CHCC) Community Guidance Center (CGC) certified seven additional individuals from the community on Aug. 25 in Adult Mental Health First Aid (MHFA), and 12 additional individuals from the CNMI Public School System and CHCC CGC on Sept. 16 in Youth MHFA.


This calendar year, the CGC has completed 11 MHFA trainings, certifying 115 individuals. Since the training initiative began in 2015, CGC has certified 1,122 individuals.


Of these individuals, 1,103 were certified in the CNMI, 11 in Palau, and eight in Guam.


The certified individuals in the CNMI have served as a ready resource for the community to address behavioral health challenges in a timely manner, preventing serious harm to residents.


Since January 2021, the CGC System of Care and Healthy Transitions has acted on 137 service requests from partner agencies,stakeholder groups, and community members.


The MHFA is an evidence-based publiceducation program that focuses on recognizing the patterns of thoughts, feelings, behaviors, and appearance that show there might be a mental health or substance abuse challenge. Individuals are taught to safely and responsibly identify and address warning signs and symptoms through the use of an action plan. Part of the training also includes topics on suicide, non-suicidal self-injury, and psychosis.