Frequently Asked Questions

What is Mental Health First Aid Certification?


Mental Health First Aid is a professional certification conferred by the National Council of Behavioral Health. The certificate lasts for three years and can be renewed online. Training covers identifying signs and symptoms of an emerging mental health issue, skills building to provide support to individuals experiencing a mental health challenge, and action steps to manage a mental health emergency or crisis. The National Council values this training at $270 per person.




How do I get certified in MHFA?


You can get certified in Adult MHFA (for adults supporting other adults) or Youth Mental Health First Aid (for adults supporting youth).

Because of COVID-19, all of our trainings are currently offered online. In-person trainings will not be considered until January, 2021.

There are two required portions of training to get MHFA certified.

  • 2 hours of self-directed study: Participants complete a 2 hour self-directed training online at your own pace. This training must be completed prior to entering your scheduled classroom session/s. We work to ensure you have at least a week to complete this part of your training.
  • 5 hours of virtual classroom work: Participants will finish certification with a MHFA trainer in an online classroom. This training will be conducted either one 5 hour session or iin two, 2.5-hour sessions, depending on the schedule.




What is the difference between Trauma Informed trainings and MHFA?


Trauma informed trainings are meant to help participants understand the role of trauma as a public health crisis, how to support individuals who have experienced trauma, and how to rethink organizational operations to be more trauma-informed. The workshops cover the neuro-biology of trauma, community trauma and institutional racism, how to manage toxic stress and self-care during COVID-19. The idea is to support individuals and organizations to become more healing and less re-traumatizing in their actions, communications and operations. The goal is to make all people feel welcome, safe and acknowledged. All trainings are 2 hours and are offered to both individuals and organizations. See pricing guidelines for more information.




What is the Grief Recovery Method?


Grief Recovery is a 8-week program that supports a group or individuals through a step-by-step process of understanding loss. The definition of grief used by the Grief Recovery Method is: The conflicting feelings caused by the end of or change in a familiar pattern of behavior. This allows for healing from varied kinds of grief due to job loss, divorce and other life events that bring about conflicting feelings. Due to COVID-19 we are not able to offer Grief Recovery workshops. However, we are able to offer a 2-hour Grief Recovery Overview workshop to individuals and organizations.




What if I want to get multiple people trained in my organization?


We offer trainings that are open to the public and can be scheduled for individuals. However, we also know that many of us work for organizations that benefit from these opportunities for professional development. We offer support to organizations and institutions who want to train several people at one time. Mental Health First Aid online certification is currently capped at 20 people per class. Other trainings can be larger depending on the need.




Are the courses offered virtually, or in person?


Currently, all Cypress trainings are virtual. We will resume offering in-person trainings in addition to virtual classes as soon as it is safe to do so.




Why isn't tMHFA (Teen Mental Health First Aid) certification available?


Cypress is waiting for the National Council for Behavioral Health to release an online version of the tMHFA curriculum. This certifcation is for teens supporting their peers through mental and behavioral health challenges, and must be run in partnership with schools / school districts. Once the curriculum is available, Cypress will begin partnering with schools to offer this important certification during students' academic day.




What is the difference between Youth Mental Health First Aid (YMHFA) and Teen Mental Health First Aid (tMHFA)?


The Youth Mental Health First Aid (YMHFA) certification is intended for adults working to assist young people experiencing mental health or substance use challenges. YMHFA training teaches adults to identify the signs and symptoms of mental health challenges, provide support to a young person, and how to manage a crisis situation. The Teen Mental Health First Aid (tMHFA) certification is intended for teenagers supporting their peers. Cypress is waiting for the National Council for Behavioral Health to release an online version of the tMHFA curriculum. Once the curriculum is available, Cypress will begin partnering with schools to offer this important certification for high school students during their academic day.




What is the process for MHFA certification?


The process for Mental Health First Aid (Adult) certification and Youth Mental Health First Aid certification (for adults assisting young people) is the same. Each certification requires the following steps: 1) Registration for a training date. You will receive email confirmation, next steps, and required links from the Cypress Team. 2) Completion of 2 hours of online pre-work prior to the training date. 3) Participation in your scheduled 5-hour, live, online class taught by a certified instructor. 4) Successful completion of an online quiz and evaluation. After you complete all 4 steps, you will receive a certificate conferred by the National Council for Behavioral Health. Your certificate is valid for 3 years and can be renewed online when it expires.