EvergreenHealth partners with county to provide youth mental health training

The Youth Mental Health First Aid initiative uses levied funds to provide community-based programs in youth mental health.

EvergreenHealth in Kirkland recently partnered with King County to host a Youth Mental Health First Aid training session as part of a levy-funded community program initiative.

The initiative uses levied funds to provide community-based programs that educate and help identify resources for youth mental health. Youth Mental Health First Aid is a program that provides training meant for anyone 18 and older and is specifically recommended for anyone who works with minors on a regular basis.

The eight-hour courses are free and only require registration at EvergreenHealth.com.

While an exact date has not been determined, EvergreenHealth is scheduled to host another course in the first quarter of 2018, according to Laurene Burton, who is the health system’s administrative director of governance and community service.

“This is not just a hospital, school or faith community problem,” she said. “This is something that hits everybody. Every demographic, every socioeconomic status, it reaches us all. I really hope each and every person could be trained in youth mental health first aid and I think we would see a dramatic change.”

Mental Health First Aid is a national program that offers courses through organizations such as EvergreenHealth. The curriculum follows a five-step action plan that outlines how to address an individual who may be in crisis.

Burton said the course is the mental health equivalent to a CPR class.

“It’s a very hands on process,” she said. “You receive the background and then actually practice (and) learn how to reach out to those individuals.”

EvergreenHealth has hosted two courses since it began in September and individuals from throughout the Puget Sound region came to complete the training course in Kirkland.

“A lot of this really is around the stigma of mental health,” Burton said. “We’re trying to break that down. It’s important that we move on beyond that attachment and really reach out to those individuals who need our support.”

Each course has 30 open spots and while attendance was adequate, she said the sessions were not full.

Additionally, EvergreenHealth recently brought in national trainers to educate more program trainers, who are eager to lead the 2018 courses, Burton said.

EvergreenHealth, which is considered a public hospital district, uses its levied funds to run the Youth Mental Health First Aid courses and other community-focused programs.

The Community Healthcare Access Team assists low-income community residents through levy funds. Additionally, the funds help provide health services for seniors through the Northshore Senior Clinic, Evergreen Geriatric Care and Kirkland Senior Council.

The Youth Mental Health First Aid program is classified under community health needs, alongside the EvergreenHealth Nurse Navigator and Healthline, Grief and Bereavement Services, Hospital-School Partnerships and Inpatient Hospice Care.

“We need to help these kids,” Burton said. “Anxiety and depression are rampant. There are pressures placed upon our students today that I know I never had to deal with and I feel that if we don’t do something now, we truly are going to impact an entire generation.”

More in News

Sarah Yount, former YES client, speaks at YES’s 50th anniversary celebration on Nov. 2. Madison Miller/staff photo.
Youth Eastside Services celebrates 50 years

YES celebrates 50 years of providing youth and family behavioral health services.

Nude suspect blocks traffic, fights officers | Police blotter

The Kirkland police blotter for Oct. 25 through Nov. 1.

Sky Metalwala has been missing for seven years. Photo courtesy of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children
Police plead for help in search for missing boy

Sky has been missing since Nov. 6, 2011 and turned 9 years old on Sept. 2.

Protesters chant “What do we want? Justice! When do we want it? Now!” at the intersection of Northeast 124th Street and 124th Avenue Northeast Thursday evening. Kailan Manandic, staff photo
Kirkland locals rally in national protest to protect Mueller

Protesters across the nation respond to former Attorney General Jeff Session’s resignation.

From L-R: Panelist Roderic Camp from Claremont University, William Beezley from University of Arizona, Linda, and Guillermo Sheridan from UNAM-Seattle touched on the subject of U.S.-Mexico relations on Nov. 1 at Northwest University. Stephanie Quiroz/staff photo.
Northwest University hosts public academic conference

NU partners with National Autonomous University of Mexico to discuss U.S.-Mexico relations

Kuderer leads Tom; Walen over Bright

Legislative District 48 race. Results are preliminary.

One of the things Kirkland’s Proposition 1 will pay for is police services. Courtesy photo
Voters decide on city’s Prop. 1 measure

The sales tax increase for police services and community safety was passing as of election night.

Democrats lead in 1st Legislative District

Derek Stanford and Shelley Kloba were successful in their re-election bids.

Most Read