What is Mental Health First Aid?

Mental health first aid is for everyone. We all have mental health just like we all have physical health. We could all have the ability to help someone when they may be experiencing a mental health difficulty. You don’t have to be an expert to talk to someone about mental health, but Mental Health First Aid has been proven to give individuals more confidence to help others.


Equuip are delighted to offer two separate accredited courses, in conjunction with Mental Health First Aid Ireland. The courses outlined below have the potential to help those who may, in their daily lives, come across individuals experiencing mental health difficulties.


Mental health first aid is the help offered to a person who is developing a mental health problem or who is experiencing a mental health crisis, until appropriate professional treatment is received or until the crisis resolves.


1. Standard Mental Health First Aid

This course teaches people how to provide MHFA. Participants will learn the signs and symptoms of mental health problems and what sort of help has been shown by research to be effective. They will learn a framework for communication, how to offer and provide initial help, and how to guide a person towards appropriate treatments and other supportive help.


2. Youth Mental Health First Aid (Youth MHFA)

Is designed for adults who live with, work with, or support young people aged between 12 and 18. This evidence-based training programme is particularly suited to parents/guardians, school staff, sports coaches, community group leaders, youth workers etc. Participants who undertake Youth MHFA Training will learn how to assist a young person who may be experiencing a mental health problem or a mental health crisis until appropriate professional help is received, or the crisis resolves, using a practical, evidence-based action plan.


Emerging mental health problems covered include:

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Psychosis
  • Substance Misuse


Mental health crises covered include:

  • Suicidal thoughts and behaviours
  • Self-harm
  • Panic attacks
  • Traumatic events
  • Severe psychotic states
  • Severe effects of alcohol or other drug use
  • Aggressive behaviours


Course Format:

These courses will be delivered by Mental Health First Aid Ireland (MHFAI) via zoom and the format caters for all learning styles with opportunities to participate, discuss scenario and practice skills. The MHFAI instructors will provide a comfortable learning environment and are trained to support your participation and learning. Course participants receive a copy of the MHFA Manual and a Certificate of Completion.


Equuip have scheduled a number of training days throughout 2022. Both courses are held over two days (attendance on each day is required in order to gain accreditation) via zoom.


You must work in the Irish Racing and Breeding industry to be eligible for these courses. Applicants should note that while we will try to facilitate all applicants, we might not be in a position to do so. Stay tuned for new dates. Any questions please email equuip@hri.ie