Posted November 16, 2007
The Idaho State University Institute of Rural Health is offering free public regional children’s mental health trainings in Blackfoot, Twin Falls, Nampa and Post Falls in the spring of 2008.
The Better Todays. Better Tomorrows. and Youth Suicide Prevention courses are designed to help adult gatekeepers identify warnings signs of suicide and mental disorders and encourage families to seek timely and appropriate treatment for their children and youth.
The trainings are conducted with funding from the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare and the federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.
“Too often, children with mental health concerns go unidentified,” said Ann Kirkwood, project director and senior research associate for the IRH. “Unidentified mental health concerns can lead to poor school performance, substance abuse and even suicide. This training explores the risk factors and warning signs for mental disorders and suicide.”
Suicide is the second leading cause of death for Idaho young people. Idaho consistently ranks in the top ten states for the rate of suicide among that group. Studies indicate that up to 94 percent of youth who complete suicide have a mental health problem.
“In 2003, about 16 percent of Idaho’s youth seriously considered suicide, and 14 percent planned a suicide attempt,” Kirkwood said. “Between 2000 and 2004, 188 Idaho youth completed suicide.”
Free continuing education units are offered for social workers, counselors and nurses, who attend the trainings on both days. Other professionals are provided with certificates of attendance. Anyone who cares for or about Idaho children and youth is invited to attend, including parents, educators, foster parents, religious leaders, youth group leaders, psychosocial rehabilitation providers and college students and faculty.
The training calendar for 2008 is as follows:
• Jan. 23 – 24: Nampa, Hispanic Cultural Center of Idaho, 315 Stampede Drive
* Jan. 23: 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.
* Jan. 24: 8 a.m. – noon
• Feb. 27 – 28: Twin Falls, College of Southern Idaho, Taylor Administration Building, 315 Falls Ave.
* Feb. 27: 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.
* Feb. 28: 8 a.m. – noon
• March 12 – 13: Blackfoot, Shilling House, 81 N. Shilling Ave.
* March 12: 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.
* March 13: 8 a.m. – noon
• April 8 – 9: Post Falls, Real Life Ministries, 1866 Cecil Road
* April 8: 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.
* April 9: 8 a.m. – Noon
Pre-registration is required. For more information, or to register, contact Marsha Tracy at (208) 373-1799 or firstname.lastname@example.org or Idaho State University, Institute of Rural Health, 12301 W. Explorer Dr. #102, Boise, ID 83713.