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Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander MHFA


MHFA Australia acknowledges the traditional custodians of the land, and pays our respect to Elders past, present and future.

The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Mental Health First Aid Course (AMHFA) curriculum is evidence-based, as informed by the AMHFA Guidelines.

Research has found this course to be effective. Specifically, a study found that the program is culturally appropriate, that it empowers Aboriginal people and that it provides information that is highly relevant in assisting Aboriginal people with a mental illness. More info.

This course teaches members of the public (18 years and over) how to assist an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander adult who is developing a mental health problem or in a mental health crisis.

What the course covers

  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander social and emotional wellbeing
  • Mental health problems in communities
  • Mental health first aid strategies for working with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.
Developing mental health problems covered are:
  • Depression
  • Anxiety problems
  • Psychosis
  • Substance use problems
  • Eating disorders
Mental health crisis situations covered are:
  • Suicidal thoughts and behaviours
  • Non-suicidal self-injury (sometimes called deliberate self-harm)
  • Panic attacks
  • Traumatic events
  • Severe effects of drug or alcohol use
  • Severe psychotic states
  • Aggressive behaviours

Course format

The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Mental Health First Aid Course is designed as a 14-hour course, typically conducted in over 2 days.

How to find a course

MHFA does not centrally coordinate courses. Contact any of the AMHFA instructors listed on the Instructor page to arrange a course in your area. Instructors also advertise their courses at our course calendar. Most instructors are willing to travel but need expenses covered.

Who can attend a course?

Any interested adult can attend. Please note this course is not a therapy or support group, rather it is an education course to learn how to give first aid to others.


Your local instructor can confirm their individual fees.

Become an Accredited Mental Health First Aider

Participants who complete this training are eligible to complete an online Accreditation Assessment in order to receive a Mental Health First Aider Certificate of Accreditation valid for 3 years. Learn more here.

More Information

for more details.