New training prepares more people for mental health jobs

Vocational skills training is helping prepare up to 45 people for jobs as crisis intervention and mental health workers in the Lower Mainland.

The new Community and Employer Partnerships (CEP) project focuses on training immigrants, Aboriginal people, people facing barriers to employment and people with disabilities.

“People with lived experience overcoming obstacles bring insight and empathy to their work,” said Nicholas Simons, Minister of Social Development and Poverty Reduction. “They can also be personally encouraging to those they help and are often more representative of the communities served.”

The province is providing more than $500,000 to the Self Rise Training Society to train people in the three-part crisis and mental health responder training project.

“This skills training is essential to ensure we have skilled workers to deal with the current mental health crisis in our province,” said Andrew Mercier, Parliamentary Secretary for Skills Training. “This program aligns with our Future Ready plan, which helps more British Columbians gain the skills, knowledge and workforce connections they need to succeed in a changing economy.

Sheila Malcolmson, Minister for Mental Health and Addictions, said: “It is important that when people need mental health support, that support is available in their community. By training people as crisis and mental health workers, our government is making lifesaving supports available when and where people need them.

Participants will receive 20 weeks of vocational, employability and essential skills training; three weeks of on-the-job work experience with employers; and a week of follow-up support to help them with their job search. Participants will also receive in-demand job training and industry-recognized certification to gain industry-wide employment. In addition, participants will also learn communication and computer skills, as well as reading, writing, and problem-solving skills to help them adapt to work environments and connect with colleagues.

“The program has been very successful so far, and the diversity of participants reflects the need for more crisis response and mental health workers in British Columbia,” said Sebastian Saboori, General Manager, Self Rise Training. Society. “We look forward to continuing this partnership, providing opportunities in this growing sector, and equipping the next generation of crisis response and mental health workers with the skills to succeed.”

Third intake begins November 14, 2022 and ends April 28, 2023. Those interested in learning more about this or other CEP projects can contact their local WorkBC Center.

“I enrolled in the Crisis Response and Mental Health Worker program in March 2021, and I can say it was the best decision I have made. I had amazing instructors who made my time enjoyable and encouraged throughout the course, and after graduation I started working as a mental health clinician,” said Linda Amoah, a graduate of the Crisis Response and Mental Health Worker training program.

This announcement is part of StrongerBC’s Future Ready plan. Future Ready makes education and training more accessible, affordable and relevant to help businesses grow and prepare British Columbians for the jobs of tomorrow.

Fast facts:

  • Funding for the project is provided through the Project-Based Labor Market Training component of WorkBC’s CEP.
  • CEP investments are targeted to projects that support an inclusive economic recovery.
  • CEP projects support the training and work experience of BC job seekers and help businesses and communities meet labor market challenges.
  • Through CEP, Province Invests $15 Million a Year in Communities Across British Columbia

Learn more:

Find out how CEPs help local communities:

Find out how WorkBC can help find jobs for British Columbians that are right for them:

Find your local WorkBC Centre:

Self Rise Training Company:

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