Mental Health Awareness Training

Funded by the United States Department of Health and Human Services, the Mental Health Awareness Training (MHAT) Project operates in Community School Districts in the Bronx. Designed with a strong emphasis on early intervention, this project serves 40 public elementary schools in unduplicated groups of eight per year over five years. Training recipients include principals, assistant principals, family workers, parent coordinators, guidance counselors, social workers, and nonprofit agency staff working in after-school programs. A total of 400 participants (80 per year) receive mental health awareness training.

Through this project, participants are trained to recognize and better understand signs of mental illness in children and become skilled in facilitating student referrals to licensed mental health providers. Professional development sessions also introduce participants to evidence-based strategies for defusing emergency situations involving students with mental disorders.

A key goal is to increase children’s access to high-quality mental health support in the Bronx. It is anticipated that project participants will play pivotal roles in referring elementary school students to those organizations.