Peace River Center to Host Free Mental Health First Aid Course on May 15 in Lakeland

Lakeland, FL – Peace River Center is offering a free Mental Health First Aid course on Wednesday, May 15, 2019 from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. at its Lakeland Crisis Campus, 715 North Lake Avenue, Lakeland, FL 33801. Made possible thanks to funding from The GiveWell Community Foundation, the Mental Health First Aid course teaches attendees how to help someone who may be experiencing a mental health or substance use challenge. Like CPR, Mental Health First Aid prepares participants to interact with a person in crisis and connect the person with help. First Aiders do not diagnose or provide any counseling or therapy. Instead, the program offers concrete tools and answers key questions like, “What do I do?” and, “Where can someone find help?”

Taught by Peace River Center’s certified instructor, this public education program introduces participants to risk factors and warning signs, builds an understanding of their impact and overviews appropriate supports. This course uses role-playing and simulations to demonstrate how to offer initial help in a mental health crisis and connect people to the appropriate professional, peer, social and self-help care. The program also teaches common risk factors and warning signs of specific illnesses like anxiety, depression, substance use, bipolar disorder, eating disorders and schizophrenia. The course materials and lunch are provided for free, but space is limited. To register visit

Organizations interested in having a larger group of staff members, volunteers, or other constituents trained in Mental Health First Aid can request training and even break the session into two 4-hour courses if desired. For more information on scheduling Mental Health First Aid visit

Peace River Center

Peace River Center is a licensed and accredited, non-profit provider of mental health, substance use and integrated medical services serving Polk, Highlands and Hardee counties. Peace River Center provides options for people struggling with mental health and addiction, for children and adults coping with the trauma of abuse and violence, crisis intervention for people in acute need, and housing and community support and integration for people affected by domestic violence or whose recovery requires more support and time. Peace River Center offers inpatient, outpatient, home-, school- and community-based services, telehealth and mobile programs to individuals, groups and families. Peace River Center’s dedicated and compassionate staff of more than 400 operate 36 programs out of 27 locations and provide 24/7 emergency psychiatric response services to the community through the mobile psychiatric Crisis Response Team. In FY2018, Peace River Center had contact with and provided services to more than 23,000 children, adolescents, adults and seniors. For more information visit