The Community Mental Health Action Plan, in collaboration with key stakeholders in municipal and provincial governments and, not-for-profit organizations, has developed this document, as an addendum to the Community Mental Health Training Framework. The initial Framework, published in 2019, contains trainings and resources in six domains related to mental health. This Addendum is intended to complement the Framework.
During this unprecedented time of uncertainty, the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic continues to impact the psychosocial well-being of Albertans.
This addendum is intended to provide support to front-line workers, caregivers and crisis response workers as they navigate the complexities of work and personal demands, associated with this difficult time.
The trainings and resources contained herein are geared towards increasing awareness and providing strategies to bolster people’s ability to ‘weather the storm’. The document is divided into two segments: Supporting Professionals During Covid-19 and Crisis Response.
A. SUPPORTING PROFESSIONALS DURING COVID-19
- Supporting Yourself – In this section, trainings and resources have been selected that provide information on ways the pandemic can affect mental health and well-being, including experiencing heightened levels of stress, anxiety and fear. It includes ways to build resilience, develop self-care, adjust to working from home and manage isolation. A subsection has been included to support the specific mental health needs of Healthcare Workers, taking into account the added stress resulting from providing essential health services.
- Supporting Others – This section is divided into two subsections. The first offers information and strategies practitioners can use to help their clients manage their own mental well-being. The latter contains resources for employers to support the well-being of themselves and their employees.
- Supporting Caregivers – Recognizing the on-going stress that can accompany caring for loved ones and family members, this section provides resources on understanding caregiver stress and coping strategies, There is a resource to guide employers of health care and home care providers in supporting staff who are also caregivers to their family or friends. A subsection provides a list of caregiver hotlines and online support services.
B. CRISIS RESPONSE
Professionals working in crisis response roles such as emergency workers, first responders, essential workers, disaster responders and helping professionals can experience increased levels of stress, anxiety and are at risk for developing vicarious trauma. This section specifically addresses the psycho-social needs of these professionals providing training, resources and tools to support self-care and recover from the impacts of providing services amid the pandemic.