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Monarch to offer Mental Health First Aid Program this fall

National training launches locally on Oct. 18 to assist people experiencing mental health emergencies

The Board of Trustees of the Stanly Community Foundation has awarded a $1,500 grant to Monarch to Mental Health First Aid final logo2support a Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) Program, a course designed to help communities better understand mental illness and respond to psychiatric emergencies. Monarch will first offer the program in Stanly County Schools later this fall.

According to The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), 1 in 4 adults and 1 in 5 youth experience mental illness in a given year. The eight-hour course will give participants a 5-step action plan to use in crisis situations involving individuals with mental illness or substance use disorders.

Monarch is partnering with Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) USA to bring an incredible community service to the region. MHFA reduces stigma and increases the understanding that mental illness is real, common and treatable. MHFA gives participants an overview of substance use disorders and mental illness such as depression, anxiety, trauma, psychosis, eating disorders and self-injury. They will also be introduced to the risk factors and warning signs of these illnesses. Participants will be able to connect individuals demonstrating or exhibiting these signs with appropriate professional care and resources.  

 “Just as CPR training helps a layperson with no medical or clinical training assist someone who is suffering a heart attack, MHFA training can equip a person to assist someone experiencing a mental health crisis, such as contemplating suicide or inflicting harm on others,” explained Allison Wilson, clinical operations director at Monarch. “In both situations, the goal is to help support an individual until appropriate professional help arrives.” 

Monarch will launch its Mental Health First Aid training from 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. during a special event on Friday, Oct. 18 at Cardinal Innovations Healthcare Solutions, 4855 Milestone Ave., Kannapolis. The agency will begin its training in Stanly County Schools in October and will expand in January 2014 to several locations throughout Stanly County for anyone interested in learning to administer MHFA.

To learn more about Monarch’s Mental Health First Aid program, please contact Allison Wilson at (704) 986-1551 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or Blake Martin, chief development officer, at (704) 986-1584 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

About the Stanly County Community Foundation
The Stanly County Community Foundation was created in 1999 to benefit a broad range of existing and future charitable needs throughout Stanly County. It is a part of a family of funds that make up Foundation For The Carolinas. Since 1999, $314,443 has been distributed by the Stanly County Community Foundation. This award is a part of $29,270 distributed in 2013.

About Monarch
Established in 1958, Monarch provides support statewide to thousands of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, mental illness and substance abuse challenges from more than 50 North Carolina counties. The agency is nationally accredited by The Council on Quality and Leadership (CQL) and is CABHA certified. Monarch, which operates The Arc of Stanly County, is an affiliate chapter of The Arc of North Carolina and The Arc of the United States. To learn more about how Monarch is “Helping Dreams Take Flight” for people living in our communities, please call (800) 230-7525 or visit                                           ###

Media contact: Natasha A. Suber, (704) 986-1582 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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