Millions of people in the U.S. are affected by mental health conditions each year. If you do not identify as one of the 1 in 5 U.S. adults who lives with a mental health condition, you likely care about someone who does. That is why NAMI Fox Valley has prioritized educating our community on how to recognize warning signs and how to support individuals who may be having challenges. Workplaces provide one valuable venue for that education.
We’ve been excited to have a growing number of opportunities to partner with local employers to provide workplace education. One highlight this year was having the pleasure of educating Kobussen Buses bus drivers for two local school districts. In those trainings, we discussed strategies to de-escalate a student who is experiencing challenges with their mental, emotional, or social well-being. While the information and strategies shared were important, the open dialogue that was created through the presentations was equally impactful. Attendees left feeling validated and supported with a new set of skills to put to use the next time a student on their bus exhibits a mental health challenge.
When approaching workplace training, it is never with the intent to put more on peoples’ plates, as we understand that too many people are already feeling stretched thin in their professional lives. Rather, our goal is to equip individuals with usable skills and to remind them that, when it comes to supporting individuals with mental health challenges, little things can truly have a large impact. Expressing care and concern, asking the right questions, and most importantly, listening, go a long way to support someone who is struggling.
To schedule a mental health presentation in the workplace, visit https://www.namifoxvalley.org/
Outreach Program Director