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MHFA for Financial Counsellors


The Mental Health First Aid Course for Financial Counsellors are for adults working in a financial counselling role. The focus of the course is how to help their clients, though course participants will learn mental health first aid skills that can be applied to help any adult.

What the course covers:

The course teaches Financial Counsellors how to assist a client who is developing a mental health problem or in a mental health crisis. Course participants learn about  the signs and symptoms of the common and disabling mental health problems, how to provide initial help, where and how to get professional help, what sort of help has been shown by research to be effective, and how to provide first aid in a crisis situation. The course is a tailored version of the 12-hour Standard MHFA Course, the content of which is derived from a number of consensus studies incorporating the expertise of hundreds of researchers, clinicians, mental health consumer advocates and carer advocates across the English speaking western world. An expert working group of financial counsellors, researchers and trainers have guided the tailoring process.

Developing mental health problems covered are:
  • Depression
  • Anxiety problems
  • Psychosis
  • Substance use problems
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

All MHFA Courses teach how to give mental health first aid using the MHFA Action Plan ALGEE. More information about ALGEE.


12-hour face-to-face course


eLearning, self-paced

The face-to-face course can be delivered as either a 2-day training package or separately as four 3-hour modules. OR The eLearning course is self-paced and takes approximately 6-8 hours to complete.
To find a course see below.   Directly enrol online.

All course participants receive a copy of the Standard MHFA Manual, a supplementary MHFA booklet for Financial Counsellors and a Certificate of Completion. In addition, MHFA Australia has developed Guidelines for Financial Counsellors working with people with mental health problems and financial difficulties. All course participants are provided with a copy of these guidelines.

Finding a face-to-face course

MHFA does not centrally coordinate the face-to-face courses. Check with your employer to see if they are arranging a course at your workplace. You can also contact any of the endorsed Standard MHFA Instructors listed on the Find an Instructor page to arrange a course in your area. Instructors also advertise their courses at our course calendar.


Until 31st March 2017, there is no cost to a Financial Counsellor to complete this tailored course.

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.

More Information

This course is part of an initiative, funded by the Australian Government Department of Health until 31st March 2017, that aims to train frontline community workers to better identify and respond to the needs of people at risk of suicide. More info on the DoH website here.