Free mental health training for students at Notre Dame

27 Apr 2023

By The Record

Mental Health Training UNDA
20Talk general manager and Notre Dame student Lachlan O’Donoghue and Notre Dame Student Wellbeing Manager Sarah Lovegrove. Photo: Supplied.

Notre Dame students will be better equipped to recognise mental health disorders and help those who are in crisis with the introduction of free mental health first aid training.

100 students from the Fremantle campus will be given the opportunity to take part in a two-day mental health training course that is akin to a physical first aid course.

The nationally accredited course will teach students how to respond to people who are experiencing a mental health crisis, giving them the confidence to start a conversation that could save a life.

The free training is the result of a university-first partnership between Notre Dame and youth mental health charity 20Talk.

20Talk general manager and Notre Dame student Lachlan O’Donoghue said the training would help students understand the signs, symptoms and early interventions for common mental health disorders.

“Having this training available and made free to young people – especially those within a university environment – not only helps the individual, it also helps all of their peers as well,” he said.

“It creates this ripple effect into the community.

“It’s really encouraging to see a lot of the people in my classes being really open to talking about mental health when I speak about the work that I do at 20Talk.”

The mental health first aid training course was developed by Mental Health First Aid Australia and has been running for almost 25 years.

20Talk will run the training and Notre Dame will promote the course and provide the venue and equipment.

Notre Dame Student Wellbeing Manager Sarah Lovegrove said the training aligned with the University’s early intervention and prevention strategies around the mental health and wellbeing of students.

“Mental health first aid training gives participants the tools and the knowledge to have really valuable conversations about mental health with peers, family members and colleagues,” she said.

Thursday, 20 April 2023

“The skills and knowledge that students will learn in these workshops will be valuable beyond their time at Notre Dame. Students will be able to apply the training in their professional and personal lives after graduation.

“This training has an immediate and ongoing impact not only on our students while they’re with us at the university, but also on the community more broadly.”

The partnership between Notre Dame and 20Talk comes as West Australians celebrate Youth Week WA.

The theme of the week is ‘Becoming: with others we dream’ and the celebrations are focused on how young people can flourish both individually and within their community.

Mental health first aid courses at Notre Dame will start next month and will run until December. Students who are interesting in taking part can email