mental health first responders


Mental health disorders are experienced by around 2 in 5 people (43.7%) and 2 in 3 senior leaders (64%), yet Employee Assistance Programs average usage globally is
approximately only 6% (SafeWork Australia, ABS, Bupa, ResearchGate).

The prevalent issues contributing to this situation include:

.Lack of Psychological Safety: Employees often do not feel secure enough to open up about their mental health challenges with their employers.
.Deficient Workplace Cultures: Many workplaces lack a culture of trust that encourages individuals to freely express their emotions.
.Absence of Routine Emotional Check-Ins: Workplaces frequently lack established methods for individuals to confidentially check in on their emotional well-being.
.Limited Leadership Engagement: Leaders often fail to proactively check in with their teams in a structured manner to provide support for mental health and overall well-being.
.Difficulty in Identifying Support Channels: When individuals require support, they often struggle to identify confidential, trusted, and skilled resources to assist them
.Reliance on Untrained Friends: While friends are often the most trusted confidants, they may lack the certified skills needed to provide adequate mental health support.
.Stigma Surrounding Mental Health Disclosure: A prevailing stigma exists, portraying the expression of mental health challenges as a shameful act.

About the Program

The Mental Health First Responders (MHFR) refers to a specialized training program designed to equip individuals with the skills and knowledge needed to provide initial support to someone experiencing a mental health crisis or struggling with mental health issues.The Mental Health First Responders (MHFR) program is a globally recognised certified program that has been developed using psychology and mental health principles, and is endorsed by the Mental Health Foundation Australia.

Promotion, Prevention, and Early Intervention Support reduces the impact on a person in mental health distress, and minimises the time and cost to recover back to a state of stability. Mental health distress, left undetected and unsupported, can lead to chronic mental health issues and increase the chance of risk and time for recovery.

“The LIFT skillset is a way to stay present with someone who is undergoing challenge, or might be challenging to interact with. As a First Responder, I apply this whenever I suspect someone has lost their balance emotionally; if they are being very reactive or if they seem very affected by a recent experience. Because it is a non-invasive process, I can offer effective support through out the day with friends, colleagues and family members in a way that builds trust over time.”

Rhys Jancoley

who can use this

.Mental Health Supports
.Emergency Responders

.Human Resource Leaders
. Psychologists

.Care Workers
.Social Workers
.First Aiders


While both programs are certified and endorsed by the Mental Health Foundation Australia, there are some key differences. Mental Health First Responder (MHFR) training is more focused on Promotion, Prevention & Early Intervention Support, creating skill sets for people to support mental health distress, and equipping them with the resources required to establish effective mental health frameworks in workplaces; whereas Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) is focused on understanding the different types of mental health issues and connecting to professional support services in times of crisis.



Mental Health First Responders program