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Veterans and Military

Mental Health First Aid is a valuable resource that can make a difference in the lives of the more than 22 million veterans, their families, and the communities they live in.

Family members and personnel working with military and families are often not aware of how to engage veterans with mental illnesses and addictions. In addition to the impact of military service on the veteran, each has a circle of family (significant other, children, parents, siblings, etc.) and friends who are also impacted by their military service.

Why Mental Health First Aid for Veterans, service members, and their families?

While military service often fosters resilience in individuals and families, some service members may experience mental health or substance use challenges. Thirty percent of active duty and reserve military personnel deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan have a mental health con­dition requiring treatment – approximately 730,000 men and women, with many experiencing post-trau­matic stress disorder and major depression. Sadly, less than 50 percent of returning veterans in need receive any mental health treatment. The Veterans Administration reports that approximately 20 veterans die by suicide every day.

Individuals trained in Mental Health First Aid can help to:

  • Break down the stigma associated with mental illness like anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and substance use disorders
  • Reach out to those who suffer in silence, reluctant to seek help
  • Let veterans know that support is available in their community
  • Provide community resource information
  • Make mental healthcare and treatment accessible to thousands in need
  • Read more in our fact sheet.

What you learn

Key components of the module for military members, veterans and their families include:

  • A discussion of military culture and its relevance to the topic of mental health
  • A discussion of the specific risk factors faced by many service members and their families such as trauma, both mental and physical, stress, separation, etc.
  • Applying the ALGEE action plan in a number of scenarios designed specifically for service members, their families and those that support them
  • A review of common mental health resources for service members, their families and those who support them

“[Military-Veteran Mental Health First Aid] is definitely a class that I would recommend to anyone in a situation to respond to military members crisis. I feel better equipped to assist in mental health incidents since attending.”

Jeannie Campbell, National Council Chief Operating Officer and Navy Veteran, describes the importance of addressing veterans mental health and how Mental Health First Aid can help.

Learn More

Can’t find a veteran/military Mental Health First Aid course or instructor near you, or want to stay updated on the latest news and information on veteran-military Mental Health First Aid? Let us know if you’d like to hear more.


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