In September 2008 areas of Northumberland were severely affected by flooding. Research suggests that following flooding communities show an increase in mental ill health such as anxiety and depression (Reacher, McKenzie, Lanes, Nichols, Kedge, Iversen, Hepple, Walter, Laxton & Simpson).

A pilot programme was instigated and evaluated to find the effectiveness of training flood recovery workers in MHFA. 17 flood recovery workers were surveyed before and after training and at a three month follow up, with ten semistructured interviews conducted for qualitative analysis. The study found:

  • Improved attitudes and feelings towards people with mental health issues post training
  • Increased confidence in workers in their knowledge and ability of how to help someone experiencing distress and higher likelihood of supporting those around them
  • A slight increase in the group’s average perceived ability to manage their own stress, both post training and three months later

Download pdf:
Robson, J. & Bostock, J. Northumberland, Tyne and Wear NHS Trust. 2008: Evaluation of Mental Health First Aid Training for Flood Recovery Workers