Mental Health First Aid - Basic

Mental Health First Aid - Basic

This program is intended for anyone who wants to learn the skills needed to provide immediate care for a suddenly ill or injured person, until more advanced medical care arrives to take over


Mental Health First Aid is offered to someone with an emerging mental health problem or in a mental health crisis until appropriate treatment is found or the situation is resolved.

SARC Learning Central offers the MHFA Basic program that is intended for adults interacting with adults (18 years and older). This course focuses on the four most common mental health disorders including substance related, mood related, anxiety and trauma related, and psychotic disorders. Participants who take this course are well prepared to interact confidently about mental health with their family, friends, communities, and workplaces.

Anyone can be trained to help in this 12-hour evidence-based MHFA Basic course!


Key Outcomes

International evaluations and feedback have found the following outcomes for participants undertaking an MHFA course:

  • Increased awareness of signs and symptoms of the most common mental health problems
  • Decreased stigma related to mental health
  • Increased confidence interacting with individuals experiencing a mental health problem or crisis
  • Increased help actually provided to individuals in crisis or experiencing a mental health problem



  • Overdose
  • Suicidal behaviour
  • Panic attacks
  • Psychotic episode
  • Acute stress reaction

MHFA Canada is an evidence based program of The Mental Health Commission of Canada.


The ALGEE Model

In the MHFA course, you will gain a solid understanding of the 5 basic actions of ALGEE:

Assess the risk of suicide and/or harm
Listen non-judgmentally
Give reassurance
Encourage professional support
Encourage other supports

ALGEE is the framework for having a confident conversation about mental health with family, friends, colleagues, and strangers.



  • Mental Health and Stigma

    • What is Mental Health First Aid?
    • Common mental health problems
    • Five basic actions of mental health first aid
    • Stigma and discrimination
  • Substance-related Disorders

    • What is a substance-related disorder?
    • Signs and symptoms
    • Risk factors
    • MHFA for substance-related problems
    • Crisis first aid for overdose
    • Treatment and resources
  • Mood-related Disorders

    • What is a mood-related disorder?
    • Types of mood-related disorders
    • Signs and symptoms
    • Risk factors
    • Substance use and mood disorders
    • Suicide in Canada
    • MHFA for mood-related problems
    • Crisis first aid for suicidal behaviour
    • Treatment and resources
  • Anxiety and Trauma-related Disorders

    • What are anxiety and trauma related disorders?
    • Types of anxiety and trauma related disorders
    • Signs and symptoms
    • Risk factors
    • Substance use and anxiety disorders
    • MHFA for anxiety and trauma related problems
    • Crisis first aid for panic attacks
    • Crisis first aid for acute stress reactions
    • Treatment and resources
  • Psychotic Disorders

    • What is a psychotic disorder?
    • Types of psychotic disorders
    • Signs and symptoms
    • Risk factors
    • Substance use and psychotic disorders
    • MHFA for psychotic disorders
    • Crisis first aid for psychotic episodes


Upcoming Mental Health First Aid - Basic Sessions:

  • Saskatoon - January 26-27, 2021
  • Regina - February 3-4, 2021

Please note that as per The Mental Health Commission of Canada you must be in attendance for the entire 2 days to become certified. 

Pricing is as follows:

  • SARC Members $165
  • Other Organizations $205 plus GST

Registration fees include lunch and materials for both days, as well as the Mental Health First Aid Handbook

Lisa Malowany, Program Manager/Trainer with SARC

Lisa Malowany has been involved in the Disability Service sector since 1989. She is a graduate of the Rehabilitation Worker Program (now called the Disability Support Worker Program) and received her two-year Diploma from SIAST (now Saskatchewan Polytechnic) in 1992. She is also a graduate of the Leadership Saskatoon Program in 2012-2013.

She has experience in a variety of roles within Community-based Organizations from direct service to management, and has also served on Boards of Directors. Lisa has had the privilege of working with a wide range of people experiencing disability and what she has learned from them has formed the basis of her career.  Although Lisa no longer works in direct service, that experience is at the heart of everything she does and helps to form every decision she makes in her work.

Lisa has worked for SARC since 2002 in various capacities. She has been a PART and TLR Instructor since 2014, and a Mental Health First Aid – Basic Instructor since 2018. Lisa is described as a passionate trainer who uses her past experience and knowledge to enhance her training sessions. She loves to share stories of her past experiences to bring training material to real life and uses activities and humour to create a positive learning environment.  

Lisa is married and has two sons. Her family are avid Saskatchewan Roughrider fans and love camping.

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  • "I appreciate the content/tools that were delivered in this course. I will be able to use this both on a professional and personal level."

    2018 Mental Health First Aid Attendee
  • "Awesome training facility. Great food. Enough time to discuss all questions."

    2019 Mental Health First Aid Attendee
  • "Excellent course - perfect for our workplace!"

    2018 Mental Health First Aid Attendee