Jessica McKoen & Associates

Delivering a wide range of mental health training

   Adult Mental Health First Aid

Originally conceived by Betty Kitchener and Professor Tony Jorm in Australia, Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) is rapidly becoming a benchmark learning tool worldwide.  In the UK, Scotland has already introduced it and now Wales, England and Ireland are following suit.      

What is Mental Health First Aid?

MHFA is exactly what the name suggests - a first aid approach to mental health. It's the help given to someone experiencing a mental health problem before professional help is obtained.

Aimed at spotting early signs of mental illness, MHFA teaches people how to:

• recognise the symptoms of mental health problems,
• provide initial help and comfort
• guide a person towards professional help.

Who is the course for?

The course is designed for staff working in a variety of roles, from care and support workers, administration and reception staff, non-clinical health service staff, and people working in local councils, the voluntary sector, job centres, colleges, and the police, prison and ambulance services.

The course, originally funded by the National Institute for Mental Health England, and the Care Services Improvement Partnership, is now led by the MHFA England Community Interest Company, and this well researched and evidence based course is now rolling out throughout England

Jessica McKoen was one of the first mental health trainers in the UK to be accredited to teach the MHFA course. Uniquely, she trains it in collaboration with service-users, who contribute a vivid and compelling account of their own journey through the mental health system into recovery.

The course has rigorous evaluation methods which chart learning outcomes and all course participants are awarded a Certificate of Attendance from the National Institute of Mental Health in England.

The cost of the two day course ranges between £120-£160 per participant, dependent on the size of the group. This includes all training, learning support materials, service-user facilitation and Certificate of Attendance.

For a further cost of £80 per person, participants will be provided with a workbook to complete in order to gain 3 credits at level 3, from the National Open College Network.

The course can be taught over two full days or four half days. 

Click here for full course outline.

If you want to learn more about Mental Health First Aid.  Click here for their website.


Jessica also offers the Youth Mental Health First Aid course for practitioners, carers and parents working with, and caring for young people aged 11 to 18 years of age.

The course which teaches participants to recognise early signs and symptoms of mental distress in young people

  • gives guidance on offering young people initial help and support

  • helps to prevent a mental illness getting worse thus enabling  faster recovery

  • encourages participants to guide young people towards professional resources and sources of help.

This course was developed based on research from young people themselves, and is illuminated by DVD clips and case studies.

Click here for full course description.