Touchstone Behavioral Health (TBH) intends to improve the quantity and quality of life for adolescents between the ages of 12 and 18 years through the deployment of a cadre of individuals trained in Youth Mental Health First Aid. The geographic area of interest is the Southwest Valley of the greater Phoenix metropolitan area, which includes areas of west Phoenix, Tolleson, Avondale, and Goodyear. TBH intends to coordinate the training of 375 individuals a year for the three project years, resulting in 1,125 individuals trained in offering mental health first aid to adolescents. It is expected that these 1,125 individuals will assist approximately 6,750 distressed youth in accessing vitally needed behavioral health services and other community resources. The catchment area for this project is the southwestern portion of the greater Phoenix metropolitan area. The total population for this catchment area is 152,077, of whom 15,932 are between the ages of 12 - 17 years (American Community Survey, 2013). Of the total population for the catchment area, 77.7% are White, 9.3% African American, 2.4% Asian American, 1.5 American Indian, and 9.0% other. The majority of residents are Hispanic at 51.1%, and 37.9% of all residents older than 5 years of age speak Spanish at home.
The Elk Grove Unified School District (EGUSD) is proposing to implement Youth Mental Health First Aid (YMHFA) within the attendance boundaries of four comprehensive high schools (Elk Grove, Laguna Creek, Monterey Trail and Valley) and three continuation high schools (Calvine, William Daylor, and Rio Cazadero) located in south Sacramento County. The adults targeted for YMHFA training will include school-based staff and youth-serving community service staff who interact with high school students in the targeted geographic communities. The goal of EGUSD's Project AWARE program is to increase the capacity to serve and support the social, emotional and mental health needs of youth in the targeted schools and communities. The YMHFA Project will:
1) Train and certify two YMHFA Instructors through support from the Sacramento County Office of Education in Year 1 of the project. Two additional YMHFA Instructors will be trained using Project AWARE grant funding during Year 1 and two more in Year 2. This will create a total of ten EGUSD certified YMHFA Instructors (we already have four certified Instructors).
2) Train 24 certificated staff and 16 classified staff per year at the four targeted comprehensive high schools as Youth Mental Health First Aiders, for a total of 72 certificated and 48 classified school staff over the three-year project period.
3) Train 2 certificated staff per year at the three continuation high schools as Youth Mental Health First Aiders for a total of 18 during the three-year project period.
4) Train a minimum of 50 community-based youth workers per year as Youth Mental Health First Aiders in the targeted communities for a total of 150 over the three-year project period.
5) Ensure each First Aider engages with a minimum of five youth per year in a YMHFA intervention. Over the 3-year project period this will result in approximately 2,880 youth who will benefit from YMHFA services, which includes referral and follow-up.
Over a 36-month period, ONTRACK Program Resources (ONTRACK) will expand Youth Mental Health First Aid (YMHFA) resources in three high need communities in the Sacramento, California region. The unmet mental health services need in Sacramento County is high, with only 10.8% of children and youth being fully served through the public system when comparing the general and poverty populations. The CALCAP-Project AWARE Capacity Building Initiative will focus on strategies to increase access to mental health resources for adolescent's age 12 through 18 in the Twin Rivers Unified School District, Sacramento Unified School District, and San Juan Unified School District. At least 324 adolescents will be referred to appropriate behavioral health services over the three-year period. The populations of focus are African American, Latino and Asian/Pacific Island youth in 11 primary zip codes with disproportionately high rates of serious mental health, trauma exposure, crime, poverty, juvenile justice involvement and academic failure. The target communities will gain a total of 550 trained Youth Mental Health First Aiders to support early identification, stigma reduction, and referrals to mental health and substance use services and treatment programs.
Catholic Charities of the East Bay's "Now is the Time" Project AWARE in West Contra Costa County, California will improve mental health and substance abuse outcomes for youth in the West Contra Costa Unified School District by training 1,200 (400 each year) adults - parents, teachers, youth service providers, and local leaders, including faith-based institutions -in Youth Mental Health First Aid. There will be five primary objectives within this program: increase the mental health literacy of adults who interact with adolescents in West Contra Costa; increase the capacity of adults within communities to respond to behavioral health issues of adolescents; increase the number of collaborative partnerships with youth-serving community agencies and programs; link adolescents with behavioral health issues to mental, emotional and behavioral health assistance and services; and conduct outreach and engagement strategies with adolescents and their families or caregivers to increase awareness of and promote positive behavioral health assistance and services. Adolescents, especially those from Richmond, the major city within West Contra Costa County, are exposed to chronic levels of community, family, and interpersonal violence, which have had a serious detrimental effect on the mental health outcomes of our youth. There is currently no YMHFA training available in the area. YMHFA Instructors will be cross trained in restorative justice practices.
Tarzana Treatment Centers, Inc. (TTC) will implement Project FAIR (First Aiders Information & Referral). This collaborative and innovative initiative will deploy a "train the trainers" approach to train youth-serving adults to become mental health "First Aiders" for high-need/low-resource Youth 12-18 in Service Planning Area (SPA) 2 of north Los Angeles County (LAC). Many of the targeted SPA 2 Youth 12-18 are Latino or otherwise identify as a minority (including LGBTQ), as will many of the First Aiders. Project FAIR's overall purpose is to improve educational and life outcomes for high-risk SPA 2 youth ages 12-18 by supporting the training of community-level youth-serving adults to recognize mental health symptoms and referral resources. Twenty adults will be trained as YMHFA Instructors during Year 1 of the grant. They will be affiliated with TTC during the proposed 3 years of this Project.
The Berkeley Unified School District, in partnership with Berkeley Mental Health, proposes to train adults in Youth Mental Health First Aid. The City of Berkeley presents a unique opportunity for this project as it is a condensed geographic area with a high enrollment rate for school-age youth. Despite the availability of mental health services, Berkeley has higher rates of depression and other risk factors than the state and national averages. The target population for the program is 6-12th graders enrolled in Berkeley Unified School District who come from a multiplicity of races, ethnicities, languages spoken, and socioeconomic status. The goals and objectives include: increase the mental health literacy and fluency of adults who come into contact with youth by training 4 YMHFA trainers and 1,020 adults as YMHFA'ers; improve youth mental health by increasing the early identification of mental health problems and subsequent connection to treatment; and increase the collaboration and partnership between communities, organizations, and programs who come into contact with youth through the establishment of an interagency advisory council that increased the number and variety of partnering agencies as well as the number and types of collaboration. Over the course of the project, BUSD will maintain 4 certified trainers and train 1,020 adults who come into contact with youth.
Sacramento City Unified School District's (SCUSD) Meadowview Project AWARE program will build on its existing structures, programs and partnerships to increase the mental health literacy of adults who interact with adolescents through YMHFA trainings for adults in Sacramento's Meadowview neighborhood. Three teams of YMHFA Instructors will train at least 525 adults over the three-year grant period. SCUSD selected Sacramento's Meadowview neighborhood to be targeted for Project AWARE's grant activities in part because the neighborhood has so few services in its geographic area. It is truly a desert of resources. Gang activity, street crime, violent crime, poverty, poor health, unemployment, homelessness, incarceration, and immigration issues all contribute to the mental health issues seen in students who attend Rosa Parks K-8, John Still K-8, and Luther Burbank High Schools, the schools named in the grant. Two YMHFA Instructors and SCUSD staff were certified in February 2015. A community agency, La Familia, will partner with SCUSD to provide two certified YMHFA Instructors for YMHFA trainings once a year to Spanish -speaking parents and community members in Meadowview. Two new YMHFA Instructors will be certified in fall 2015.
The Denver-AWARE, youth mental health first aid (YMHFA) training program, led by the Denver Department of Human Services (DDHS), will serve adolescents (ages 12-18) from five targeted ZIP codes in the city and county of Denver, Colorado, where there is a high concentration of risk factors for behavioral health issues. Denver-AWARE will train as many as 4,050 individuals as youth mental health first aiders. Denver-AWARE seeks to achieve the following objectives: at least 3,000 adults who are representative of the communities to be served and who interact with adolescents in Denver will have completed the YMHFA training; at least 75% of the adults trained through Denver-AWARE will self-report an increase in youth mental health literacy as measured by pre- and post-surveys; at least 50% of the adults trained through Denver-AWARE will self-report using youth mental health literacy skills in real world situations, as measured through survey and focus groups responses; 30 instructors who are employed by a range of organizations, including city agencies and youth serving entities, will be certified to provide YMHFA training; develop and launch a youth-led social media campaign aimed at decreasing stigma regarding mental health issues and supports; increase the number of youth behavioral health referrals in the targeted communities by at least 10%; and convene a project advisory council of 13-20 members representative of the communities served that will support strategies aimed at decreasing stigma regarding mental health issues.
The Mental Health Association of Connecticut (MHAC) is a statewide direct service, advocacy and education organization that seeks to bring Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) to Connecticut's Litchfield County. Litchfield County has been identified as the proposed service area due to its rural composition, the results of a community needs assessments, and MHAC's involvement in serving transition-aged youth in the community. With limited resources for this target population and a lack of community education related to engaging transition-aged youth in behavioral health services and supports, MHAC will train MHFA First Aiders in identifying transition-aged youth who may be in need of behavioral health services, responding to crisis and non-crisis situations involving transition-aged youth who may have behavioral health disorders, and providing information and referrals to engage transition-aged youth in services and supports as early as possible.
Northwestern Connecticut Area Health Education Center (NWCTAHEC), in collaboration with Western Connecticut State University (WCSU), will implement Connecticut Campuses for Improved Mental Health (CCIMH). CCIMH will focus on improving mental health outcomes for transition aged youth (TAY) college students through the implementation of the evidenced-base Mental Health First Aid (MHFA)-High Education program. College students are at high risk for developing mental illness, as many illnesses first present at the college age. Pair that with the high-stress environment of college life and the fact that many young adults are on their own for the first time, and students are especially vulnerable to developing problems with their mental health. Achievement of project goals will be measured through the accomplishment of the project objectives over the three program years, including: increased numbers of adults demonstrating increased levels of mental health literacy through training and certification classes; increased capacity of adults in the college environment to respond to the mental health issues of TAY youth due to the number of adults prepared through certification and training courses; ongoing participation at college events and through media outlets to increase TAY college students' awareness and promotion of positive behavioral health; access to behavior health resource lists and resources cards for referral and distribution to and for linking TAY college students with mental health needs with programs and services; and increased number of collaborative associations and partnerships between TAY serving agencies and programs and among MHFA Instructors. After the three year project (Oct 2015-Sept 2018) 2) MHFA-Higher Education Instructors will certify 900 new MHF Aiders (200 in year 1, 300 in year 2 and 400 in year 3). In addition, 9,000 referrals to mental health services will be made for TAY identified with a mental health challenge or illness.
The Community Support for Transition-Aged Youth (CSTAY) program will provide Mental Health First Aid training to professionals who work with transition-aged youth (TAY) in Central Connecticut. Wheeler Clinic will partner with the Connecticut Community for Addiction Recovery (CCAR), to implement the CSTAY program. Wheeler will provide program leadership and Wheeler and CCAR staff will provide MHFA training. CSTAY will provide 26 MHFA trainings each year for 520 individuals who work with TAY (ages 18-24) in Central Connecticut. Over the course of the three-year grant period the program will train 1,560 individuals through 78 trainings. Targeted populations include TAY who may be at risk including those involved in the justice system, attending adult education, community college or technical school, and individuals who are unemployed. The program will train members of local police departments, Alternative in the Community (AIC) community justice recidivism reduction program staff, community college and technical school faculty and staff, and Workforce Investment Act (WIA) funded CT One-Stop career center staff. MHFA instructors will provide standard MHFA training, as well as MHFA trainings using the First Responder and College MHFA supplements as appropriate for the training audience. Cities within the catchment region have high rates of binge drinking, suicide, poverty, and crime.
Project AWARE - Northwest CT is a coordinated community-wide effort to respond to increased behavioral health needs in adolescent's ages 12-18 residing in the remote rural northwest corner of CT. Over 1,300 school personnel and youth-serving adults will be trained as Youth Mental Health "First Aiders". The focus population, 5,800 students enrolled in 11 schools in NW CT, ranges from 3-30% minority, with 9-49% of students meeting the requirements for free/reduced school lunch. Emphasis is placed on reaching high risk youth, e.g., homeless youth, youth with school disciplinary offenses, and juvenile offenders, within the catchment area. The Project Objectives include: increase the mental health literacy of adults in NW CT by creating a diverse team of YMHFA Instructors and First Aiders; build community capacity for early identification and response to the behavioral health needs of adolescents by training a total of 1,380 school personnel and youth-serving adults in NW CT as YMH "First Aiders" over the 3 year project period; establish and strengthen referral networks with behavioral health service providers to connect adolescents with appropriate, affordable, and culturally competent assistance and services; and build capacity in the school community and in the community-at large to address the behavioral health needs of adolescents through enhanced partnerships with youth-serving community coalitions, and community and faith-based agencies and groups.
The School District of Palm Beach County (SDPBC), Florida, serves a county-wide school system with 183,815 high-needs students, 58% of whom are economically disadvantaged. The project will provide training in Youth Mental Health First Aid (YMHFA) to teachers and a broad array of adults at the community level who interact with youth. Over the three year grant period, 2,275 individuals (525 in Year 1; 875 in Year 2; 875 in Year 3) will become "First Aiders" by completing YMHFA courses facilitated by a cadre of 14 YMHFA instructors that include school district, non-profit, and government personnel. As a result of effectively saturating Palm Beach County with "First Aiders," it is projected that this project will reach its goals to: train a broad array of adults in Palm Beach County who intersect with youth in YMHFA and; increase the number of individuals referred to mental health or related services including an increase in the number of referrals given to youth by problem/solving school-based teams, as well as an increase in the percentage of middle and high school students who have at least one adult at school to talk to about personal problems.
Project Duval AWARE is a collaborative initiative between the Partnership for Child Health, Mental Health America of Northeast Florida and the Jacksonville Children's Commission to provide Youth Mental Health First Aid training to adults who work with youth ages 12 - 18 who reside in Duval County with an emphasis on the urban core. YMHFA participants will include law enforcement and corrections officers; faith based community leaders, after school providers; case managers; juvenile justice probation officers; family members and other caring citizens. Project Duval AWARE will build upon the strengths and resources that exist within Jacksonville's mental health service delivery systems and will address infrastructure gaps and weaknesses.
The Central Florida Pathways to Awareness, Support and Services (C PASS) Project is a partnership between the University of Central Florida, the University of South Florida, and the Florida Council for Community Mental Health to expand Youth Mental Health First Aid (YMHFA).Training and outreach efforts will be targeted to frontline professionals who work with high risk youth who experience mental health and substance abuse issues and who encounter significant life stressors and adversities such as exposure to violence, abuse, neglect, poverty, and other forms of victimization. Project objectives aim to: develop strategic community-wide plans to coordinate outreach efforts and training; provide technical assistance/support to existing and new instructors/first aiders; expand existing behavioral health initiatives); train and certify instructors/aiders; provide technical assistance/support; increase training to diverse sectors); develop outreach plans; disseminate educational resources; increase number of events); increase MOUs; expand workforce policies; develop advisory committees; develop behavioral-health referral plans); and increase the number of youth/family members successfully identified, referred, and linked to supportive and/or mental-behavioral health services. Over the life of the grant, the C Pass Project will serve to benefit high risk youth in the greater Central Florida region by certifying a total of 9 YMHFA instructors who will train 1,425 YMHFA first. Prevention efforts will specifically target professionals working within the Department of Children and Families and in related workforce settings such as juvenile justice, law enforcement, LGBTQ agencies, community-based facilities, behavioral health organizations, and other youth and family-serving organizations.
Switchboard of Miami, proposes to implement Project on the MDC Wolfson Campus in Downtown Miami (33132) through Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) training. Given that MDC transition-aged students are predominantly female (58%), Hispanic (64%), and low income (64%), they are especially at risk for mental health issues and/or substance use disorders. A 2013 NIDA report noted a disturbing trend in injection drug use among a new, young adult cohort of prescription opioid injectors, heroin initiates, and methamphetamine users in Miami-Dade County. Though the need is great, MDC has no student counseling centers or formal process to connect students in distress to the behavioral health services they require. There is no record of any MHFA Instructors or First Aiders within the 33132 zip code and only 6 Instructors and 441 First Aiders "located in and around Miami." The newly trained First Aiders will saturate the MDC Wolfson campus and Downtown Miami (33132) with an estimated ratio of 1 First Aider to every 15 transition-aged youth on campus. Project AWARE goals are to: increase the mental health literacy of adults who interact with the transition-aged youth who attend MDC's Wolfson campus; increase the capacity of adults within our geographic catchment area to respond to the behavioral health issues of transition-aged youth; conduct outreach and engagement strategies with transition-aged youth and their families to increase awareness of and promote positive behavioral health; link transition-aged youth with behavioral health issues to mental, emotional, and behavioral health assistance and services; increase collaborative partnerships with youth-serving agencies and programs.
The Nassau Alcohol Crime and Drug Abatement Coalition (NACDAC) will be implementing the Youth Mental Health First Aid Project in Nassau County to serve youth ages 12 - 18 in the middle and high schools. The goal of the project is to build and expand the capacity of Nassau County adults to detect and respond to the behavioral health issues impacting Nassau County adolescents in order to connect those with behavioral health issues to needed services. The objectives of this project are to: increase the mental health literacy of Nassau County adults who interact with adolescents (Nassau County School District teachers, Family Support Services staff, Guardian Ad Litem staff and volunteers and Take Stock in Children staff); increase the capacity of Nassau County adults to respond to the behavioral health issues of adolescents as measured by having 736 trained adults (Year 1 = 196, Year 2=270, Year 3=270) as YMHFA First Aiders for the 2018-2019 school year; conduct outreach and engagement strategies with adolescents and their families or caregivers to increase awareness of and promote positive behavioral health as measures by the number of youth and their families reached with information dissemination and engagement strategies; link adolescents with behavioral health issues to mental, emotional, and behavioral health assistance and services as measured by the number of referrals made to behavioral health services through the YMHFA program; increase the number of collaborative partnerships with relevant youth-serving community agencies and programs and set up a system for ongoing training and coaching support for YMHFA Instructors and First Aiders as measured by YMHFA Instructors and First Aiders participating in ongoing training and coaching.
The Safe Climate Coalition (SCC) of Lake County proposes to address the behavioral issues of youth aging out of foster care for Lake and Sumter Counties, Florida. The objectives are to: increase the mental health literacy of adults who interact with adolescents and youth; increase the mental health literacy of adults who interact with adolescents and youth; conduct outreach and engagement strategies with adults and youth and their families or caregivers to increase awareness of and to promote positive behavioral health; link adolescents and youth with behavioral health issues to mental, emotional, and behavioral health assistance and services; and increase the number of collaborative partners with relevant youth-serving community agencies and programs. The SCC MHFA Project will serve over 3000 individuals over the course of the three year period of the grant award with 900 projected for the first year of implementation.
The Clarkston Area Youth Mental Health Awareness Network (CAYMHAN) project connects adolescents age 12-18 in the Clarkston, Georgia, area with behavioral health services by training over 1,100 adults (teachers, parents, faith leaders, etc.) in Youth Mental Health First Aid. The Clarkston area, located within Dekalb County in the suburban belt that surrounds Atlanta, presents unique mental health challenges. Clarkston is home to large communities of refugees with widely varying backgrounds, languages and cultures. Refugee youth often suffer from limited English literacy, lack of previous education, limited technology skills, limited understanding of American culture, and little access to out-of-school programs. Refugee families often have experienced extreme violence, trauma, economic and political strife, health issues, and famine before arriving in the US. In the Clarkston area, gaps and disparities in behavioral health services that afflict these vulnerable populations are apparent from the federal designation of Dekalb County as a Mental Health Professional Shortage Area and a Medically Underserved Area. CAYMHAN will ensure that the diversity of trained adults-300, 400 and 480 in years one, two and three of the project-are representative of the area's adolescent population consistent with project goals. CAYMHAN will also work with its partners to provide committed referral resources, ensure saturation, and develop a sustainable capacity to provide YMHFA training in the out-years. Training will be delivered by certified YMHFA instructors who are also highly trained doctoral students in counseling psychology from Georgia State University's College of Education.
The behavioral health division of Tanner Medical Center, Inc.-Willowbrooke at Tanner will implement "Now is the Time" Project AWARE-Community Grants (NITT-AWARE-C) program and its community-wide implementation of Youth Mental Health First Aid (YMHFA), in order to amplify efforts toward building a full continuum of multi-level behavioral health services and supports for over 45,000 adolescents (ages 12-18) in Carroll, Bartow, Paulding and Coweta counties. Tanner, in partnership with area behavioral health service providers and other youth-serving community agencies in Carroll, Bartow, Paulding and Coweta counties, will certify 12 YMHFA instructors over the three-year NITT-AWARE-C project period, who will in turn train a total of 2,650 YMHFA First Aiders (920 in Year 1; 855 in Year 2; and 875 in Year 3).
North Iowa Project AWARE (NIPA) will increase mental health literacy and enhance youth behavioral service delivery among adults from diverse community sectors in a rural seven county North Central Iowa area with a population of 10,164 youth, ages 12-18. Six instructors representing education, law enforcement, the faith community, substance abuse prevention, and behavioral health youth serving organizations-will be trained to deliver Youth Mental Health First Aid during year one. These instructors will train 340 First Aiders in year one, 295 in year two, and 280 in year three-for a total of 915 adults across the seven county area over the full period of this grant. The work of NIPA will be integrated into the long-term strategic plan of the coalition. Project work and outcomes will also be shared with 15 school districts; 3 regional planning groups, 4 additional area coalitions, 7 county health departments, and multiple area organizations to inform and enhance their behavioral health efforts for young people.
Grundy County Health Department will address mental health and substance abuse needs among Grundy youth ages 12 to 18 years by effectively saturating the county with adults trained in Youth Mental Health First Aid. The project proposes to impact the lives of 8,000 Grundy youth by training 400 adults in Youth Mental Health First Aid over the course of three years (year 1 = 100, year 2 = 150, year 3 = 150). Five instructors will train teachers and other school personnel, faith-based leaders, extracurricular mentors, and business owners. The Help4U Referral Resource Guide will be available in paper copy as well as web-based for easy and discrete access. Grundy County Health Department, in partnership with local school systems and youth-serving agencies, will address mental health and substance abuse needs among Grundy youth.
Sertoma Centre, Inc., a licensed Behavioral Health Provider for individuals 18 and over, is proposing to operate a Community Mental Health First Aid Training Program (NITT AWAREC) to equip community members, religious leaders, first responders and other professionals to recognize the signs and symptoms of a variety of mental health disorders in transition-aged youth 16 to 24 years of age in Bloom Township, Cook County Illinois. There are 12,500 transition-aged youth in the area and estimate that 2,500 are at risk. High poverty, violent crime, dropout rates, race, and other risk factors point to the need for intervention. Project objectives are: train 3,000 members of the identified community that interact with transition-aged youth in MHFA each year: Year One-600; Year Two-1,200; Year Three-1,200; each year of training will address at least one of the identified groups; trainees will approximately represent the identified diversity of the community; post-training survey will show increased knowledge in basic mental health literacy; post-training survey will show maintenance of increased knowledge in basic mental health literacy; provide resource and referral information packet to every training group; track number of referrals made to behavioral health services; track number of youth served by collaborative behavioral health providers quarterly; hold quarterly follow-up depression and/or anxiety screenings annually; include identified referrals and resources in the south Cook County area; provide one additional training offered by the Community Education Program to 50% of first aiders trained in MHFA; and each training session will lead to at least one referral for MHFA training.
Chestnut Health Systems, a community-based provider of behavioral health treatment and prevention services, proposes a Youth MHFA training project. Chestnut Health Systems will partner with the St. Clair County Youth Coalition. Four experienced mental health clinicians will complete YMHFA training in the nearby St, Louis, Missouri area, and will conduct 38 trainings for a total of 1,550 First Aiders trained over the three project years. The project is a natural outgrowth of an ongoing effort to institute a County-wide suicide prevention effort. There is an estimated population of 23,000 youth in this age range in St. Clair County. High rates of interpersonal violence and crime clearly impact the physical and emotional safety of local schools; many adolescents live in isolated communities, and chaotic and underserved neighborhoods. Project goals and objectives, in addition to recruiting and training YMHFA First Aiders, will be to implement an integrated and accessible network of mental health treatment resources for youth referred by adults for services. Specialized treatment services will be available for issues related to trauma, family violence, substance abuse, sexual and gender minority experience, young parents, and cultural identity.
SAFEty intends to implement training for Youth Mental Health First-Aid (YMHFA) in conjunction with supportive services for at-risk youth and trafficking victims throughout the Chicago metro/Northwestern Indiana (NWI) area, extending into Indianapolis metropolitan areas. Their focus is youth ages 12 - 18, with training that ensures cultural competency for youth's, including ethnicity, race, religion, gender identification, sexual orientation, socioeconomic conditions, linguistics, and trauma. Training will also be offered in Spanish to accommodate Spanish-speaking youth and families, with access to translation assistance to provide training in other languages as needed. The Goals of the SAFEty project achieve relevant results in the following ways: expand capacity to increase awareness of mental health issues among youth in the Chicago metro/NWI area and into metro Indianapolis; connect targeted youth with behavioral and/or mental health issues to appropriate services; and establish a cadre of mental health "first aiders" for youth throughout the Chicago metro/NWI area and into metro Indianapolis.
Aunt Martha's Youth Service Center (Aunt Martha's) NITT-AWARE -C program will expand the capacity to detect and respond to behavioral health issues impacting adolescents (ages 12 - 18) and connect those with behavioral health issues to needed services. The targeted geographic area for this program encompasses Iroquois, Vermilion, Edgar and Clark counties, four rural counties in East Central Illinois bordering Indiana. The geographic area is over 3,150 square miles; population density is 45 people per square mile. The geographic catchment area has 14,215 adolescents of which 85% are White, 10% Black, 4% Hispanic, 1% Other. Through a NITT Advisory Council the program will build collaborative partnerships with youth serving agencies and programs to engage adults to become Youth Mental Health "First Aiders" for adolescents in their community. The objectives of this program are: maintain 3 adults who are credentialed /certified to provide YMHFA First Aid training over the three year project period; 2,010 individuals receive training to respond to adolescents (ages 12 - 18) who have a behavioral health crisis over the three year project period; and YMHFA Aiders will refer 3,000 adolescents (ages 12 -18) who need help to a mental health and/or substance abuse provider over the three year project period.