Psychology department hosting Youth Mental Health First Aid

Valeriya Yusupova

Youth Mental Health First Aid (YMHFA) is a course presented by health professionals Aubrey Doss and Deena Murdock from Joplin’s Ozark Center. It’s an eight hour class that takes place from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on Nov. 8, in Room 356 of Billingsly Student Center. The entrance’s cost is 30 dollars to attend. 

The purpose of the course is to teach participants the warning signs and risk factors of different mental health challenges that most affect ages 12-18. It includes anxiety, depression, psychosis, eating disorders, ADHD, disruptive behavior disorders, and substance use disorder.

However, the goal is not to diagnose those mental issues but rather learn how to support young adults.

Murdock and Doss are presenting the course with several years of experience in the health field under their belt.

“We have been working with youth, their families, and community members and learning about mental health and how to best help them through their mental health challenges,” said Doss.

During the course, professionals use role-playing and various simulations to assess any mental health crisis. They also provide useful information, different activities and give the chance to young people to connect with peers, social, and self-help care.

This course is open to everyone and is specifically designed for adults that interact with teens regularly or daily. 

“It’s especially great for community members, teachers, coaches, clergy, police, juvenile officers, parents, and grandparents,” said Doss.

According to Doss, it’s the third time that this event is hosted with the help of the psychology club. 

“The attendance is usually great, and they receive positive feedback at Missouri Southern.”