Forsythes Training helps Compass make mental health training mandatory

Client case study

Forsythes Training is helping leading Australian community housing provider, Compass Housing, make mental health training mandatory. It requires new staff to complete the Mental Health First Aid course within the first six months of starting work and all staff to undertake the training every three years.

Training Officer Lisa Jansen says, following a review of its probation period. Compass has a checklist of mandatory training which includes mental health training.

Forsythes Training now delivers the training quarterly.

Mentally healthy clients

She says the training is important given the industry in which Compass operates.

“The training helps our frontline staff to recognise if clients are experiencing stress or mental health issues and to respond confidently and appropriately,” Lisa says.

“Experiencing homelessness or struggling to put a roof over your head is a difficult experience,” she says.

“Some people also have issues with maintaining steady housing because they experience mental illness.”

Mentally healthy staff

Lisa says the training is also helpful for staff to recognise signs of stress or mental ill health in themselves or colleagues.

She says Compass uses Forsythes Training to deliver the two-day Mental Health First Aid course because of the quality of its trainers, its professional approach and the fact that it is a local (NSW-based) company. The fact that the course has an assessment component and is accredited is also very appealing.

“The content is very helpful for our staff personally and professionally and it is also good for them to have the qualification on their CV.”

Expert mental health trainers

Craig Semple

Forysthes Training’s expert metal health and resilience trainer, Craig Semple,.delivers the training.

Lisa first saw Craig when she attended a free seminar that he ran on creating mentally health workplaces. She has also completed the Mental Health First Aid training.

“Craig has a great deal of experience and expertise in this area which means he is also caring and empathetic when delivering the training.

“He has a personal story which is relatable and inspirational.”

A professional team

Lisa says the rest of the Forsythes Training team match Craig’s professionalism.

“Chad White [hands on Director and CEO] and the administration staff make things easy.”

“Nothing is ever a problem; they are always contactable and get back to me quickly.”

Compass Housing is a not for profit organisation that manages more than 6,500 social and affordable housing properties in NSW, South East Queensland and New Zealand.