BERNARDS TWP., NJ - The Somerset Hills YMCA in Basking Ridge, a branch of the Somerset County YMCA, is hosting trainings regarding mental health, according to a release.

The Mental Health First Aid trainings will present risk factors and warning signs of mental health illnesses, and will educate participants on the steps to take to support someone experiencing a mental health crisis.

Training for youths will be held Nov. 13 and Nov. 20 from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. to focus on challenges among adolescents. Training for adults is scheduled for Dec. 4 and Dec. 11 from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. to discuss challenges among adults.

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The trainings will be held at the Somerset Hills YMCA branch at 140 Mount Airy Road in Basking Ridge.

“Wellness is essential to living a full and productive life,” Lynne Applebaum, senior director of wellness at the Somerset Hills YMCA, said in the release. “We may have different ideas about what wellness means, but it is more than the absence of disease. It involves complete general, mental and social well-being. Mental health is an essential component of our overall well-being. It is tied to the balance that exists between our emotional, physical, spiritual and mental health.”

According to the release, the National Alliance of Mental Illness has said that one in four Americans will face mental illness this year.

“Through the MHFA training initiative, we hope to diminish the stigma associated with mental illness, to raise awareness of mental health and to connect community members with mental health resources,” David M. Carcieri, president and CEO of the Somerset County YMCA, said in the release. “To that end, the Y has taken deliberate steps to become a leader in community education for the importance of overall mental health.”

Mental Health First Aid, the release said, is an eight-hour course that trains participants on a five-step action plan for the skills, resources and knowledge to help someone in crisis connect with the appropriate professional, peer, social and self-help care.

The course is designed to help a variety of professions, including primary care professionals, employers, business leaders, faith communities, school personnel, state police, nursing home staff, mental health authorities, state policymakers, volunteers and more.

The training sessions are open to the public, and the cost to take part is $50. There are also designated training sessions available for schools, organization and companies.

For more information, contact Applebaum at

To register for the training, visit