ensa Mental Health First Aid courses

ensa logo for Mental Health First Aid

HealthFirst provides certified ensa Mental Health First Aid courses in English throughout Switzerland.

In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, we also offer these courses online. The course contents remain the same as our usual training with the addition of material covering the current COVID-19 situation and how it is impacting mental health. Please contact us for more information.


Why ensa Mental Health First Aid?

One in every two people in Switzerland will suffer from a mental illness at some point in their life. But even though mental health issues are common, many people are not well informed about how to recognise them, how to respond to an affected person, or about the treatments available. Plenty of myths and misconceptions exist around mental illness, resulting in widespread stigmatisation.

The well-validated, evidence-based ensa Mental Health First Aid programme teaches participants simple, practical skills to help work colleagues, family, friends, or any other person in need. Participants learn how to recognise signs of mental ill health in others and are encouraged to break down barriers and to listen in a non-judgmental way. They are empowered to respond to people in psychological distress, including in a crisis situation, enabling them to access the support they might need as part of their journey to recovery.

Several randomized controlled trials have shown that Mental Health First Aid training improves a participant’s knowledge of mental illness, reduces their stigmatizing behaviour towards others and increases self-confidence in their ability to help those in need. In addition, it strengthens the individual’s own mental wellbeing.

What the training involves

During 14-hours of training, future Mental Health First Aiders will gain a basic knowledge of common mental illnesses affecting adults including depression, anxiety, psychosis and alcohol or other substance misuse. They will learn how to proactively approach a person in mental distress, aiming to offer support before a crisis develops. Concrete Mental Health First Aid measures for ongoing problems and crises are discussed and practiced.

Throughout the training, suitable for anyone aged 18 and over, the social stigmas that exist around mental health are addressed by increasing awareness of the fact that mental health difficulties can happen to anyone at any time.

Who is this training for?

Anyone who wants to learn about how they can help a friend, family member, colleague or other person in need with a mental health problem. No previous training or qualifications are needed.

Train ensa Mental Health First Aiders in your organisation

As we spend most of our waking hours at work, mental health problems can often be recognized at an early stage in the workplace. If such problems are detected early and a person is guided to appropriate professional help, this can enable a great deal of suffering and heavy consequential costs to be avoided – not only for the individual themselves, but also for the company or organization.

So it makes sense that a certain proportion of employees within any organisation have the expertise of ensa Mental Health First Aiders. Pro Mente Sana recommends that if a prophylactic attitude to mental health is to be part of the corporate culture and employees affected by mental health problems are to be given support at an early stage, at least 10% of the workforce should complete an ensa Mental Health First Aid course.

For more information about our training for companies and organisations, please contact us

Public ensa Mental Health First Aid courses

Our next public course in Zug will run over the following evenings:

  • Monday 28th September 2020, 17:30-21:00
  • Tuesday 29th September 2020, 17:30-21:00
  • Wednesday 7th October 2020, 17:30-21:00
  • Thursday 8th October 2020, 17:30-21:00

The course fees are 380 CHF per person. Please email: contact@healthfirst.ch for more information and registration.

We are also finalising dates and venue for our Autumn Geneva public course. Please email contact@healthfirst.ch to register your interest.