On Friday, October 4, 2019, the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) and the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) will launch a virtual course to equip volunteers, first responders and persons in the community to provide the initial response to individuals experiencing psychological distress after a crisis.
The 10-hour, self-learning course titled, ‘Psychological First Aid (PFA) in Disaster Management in the Caribbean,’ will be available free of cost, on the Caribbean node of PAHO’s Virtual Campus for Public Health at www.campusvirtualsp.org. It covers the principal areas of understanding PFA, how to help responsibly, providing PFA, people who likely need special attention, caring for self and colleagues, and practicing PFA skills. Upon completion of the training and final exam, participants receive a course completion certificate, issued by PAHO and CDB.
This virtual course is part of a joint project by PAHO and CDB. This 18-month project aims to enhance regional capacity to provide mental health and psychosocial support in disaster management in the Caribbean, and includes strengthening in-country competencies to conduct needs assessments and action plans; developing and implementing a regional communication campaign; and conducting monitoring and evaluation of the project.
The Project includes CDB/PAHO’s ongoing campaign, ‘Stronger Together,’ which tackles the stigma associated with seeking mental health and psychosocial support and puts a special focus on vulnerable people, such as children and adolescents, women, senior citizens, and people with disabilities. The campaign concludes in November 2019.