Mental Health First Aid training in Louisville

B M Dhakal/Louisville

November 19, 2016

A day long, 8 hours, Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) training is conducted here today in a medical office building of University of Louisville Hospital, downtown.

It is the kind of training organized first time by Bhutanese Society of Kentucky (BSK), that is facilitated by the bilingual (English and Nepali) certified  trainers.

Thirty community volunteers participated in the training.

Participants after the training/ Photo: BNS
Participants after the training/ Photo: BNS

Dr. Ruth Carrico, the program director of Global Health mentioned the importance of having such training for empowering the community and expressed happiness stating that Bhutanese community is well organized to facilitate such training.

Two bilingual trainers – Ashok Gurung and Parangkush Subedi kept the participants engaged and entertained them throughout the training session with lively conversations.

Trainer Ashok Gurung/ Photo: Chandra Dahal
Trainer Ashok Gurung/ Photo: Chandra Dahal

Bhim Koirala, the program director of BSK and health navigator at Global Health expressed his special thanks to Dr. Carrico for her support in organizing the training, Elizabeth Barnes for volunteering throughout the training, and the bilingual facilitators – Ashok and Parangkush.

Koirala also thanked State Refugee Program, KY, the Division of Refugee Health, Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) for their support to organize this program. He also requested the participants to get involved in providing support to families with mental health problems after having this training.

“Such training in the future shall equip us to extend support to other community workers who are providing services to  family members or relatives with mental health problems”, said Yadavi Mishra, one of the participants of the training. “I would like to thank all those who brought this opportunity and educated us to provide care to our dear ones”, Mishra further added.

Rup Pokharel, the Service Coordinator at Jewish Family and Children’s Services (JF&CS) of Pittsburgh attended the training as an observer and provided feedback of the training session. He emphasized on providing this opportunity to more people in the community because the difference it has made is huge when the cultural competencies is adopted facilitated by the bilingual trainers with the experiences of handling mental health issues in the same community.

Katina Cummings, refugee health promotion coordinator at Kentucky Office of Refugees (KOR) also participated as an observer.

The KOR and the Kentucky Refugee Ministries partially supported the training with financial support.