Carla Henison describes her experience of becoming a mental health first aider
28 Jan 2019
There’s more talk about mental health in society just now than ever before, so what are we at Hymans doing to support our employees with theirs?
Mental health is such an important part of our overall wellbeing. I’m super interested in all things wellbeing and I’m a keen member of the Hymans Wellbeing Group.
Towards the end of 2017 I volunteered to participate in a mental health first aid course together with another colleague, so that we could introduce the role to both our Glasgow and Edinburgh offices (it has since been rolled out in Birmingham and London too).
The course was two full days in separate weeks - very enjoyable, but quite intense at the same time.
The mental health first aider role looks to provide support and solace to anyone experiencing distress, guiding that person towards appropriate professional help.
Initially I was quite nervous as I was keen to be as valuable a resource as possible for anyone who contacted me looking for support. About 1 in 4 adults suffer from poor mental health or mental illness, so within any workplace there are bound to be people struggling. I was therefore hoping that colleagues felt comfortable reaching out to me for support if they needed it.
Since the course I have supported a small number of people with a variety of mental health issues. From feedback I’ve received, they felt it was helpful to be able to access a 3rd party in a timely manner, who could listen and provide support.
If you are ever in the position whereby your mental health has deteriorated and you have access to a mental health first aider at work, do reach out to them - they’re there to help.