Youth Mental Health Facilitators Guides and Resources

Since 2016, The Jewish Education Project has offered training to educators and youth professionals throughout the New York Area in Youth Mental Health First Aid, a certification program through the National Council of Behavioral Health. This program provides training for educators, caregivers, and camp counselors to help adolescents (ages 12-18) who are experiencing a mental health or addiction challenge and even how to address and support teens who are in crisis.  

Following The Jewish Education Project’s lead, several communities within the Jewish Teen Education & Engagement Funder Collaborative followed suit and also held courses for their constituencies.  

The Youth Mental Health First Aid Facilitator’s Guide and resources were developed in partnership with the Collaborative and The Jewish Education Project as part of our collective commitment to both set the standard and enrich the training across the Jewish teen engagement landscape. 

The Facilitator’s Guide was created to: 

  • Provide communities with an easy way to learn about the course and what they may need to consider as they plan to offer this training in their own community. 

  • Build on the existing course content by adding Jewish values and cultural/religious aspects that address issues that are specific to the Jewish and local/regional community. 

  • Better reflect the unique needs of Jewish youth professionals as ongoing support to teens 


  1. Section I – Facilitator’s Guide: Bringing Youth Mental Health First Aid to Your Community. This section is for anyone seeking to host a YMHFA training in their community and is available to everyone.
  2. Section 2 – Certified Facilitator’s Guide: Youth Mental Health First Aid Through a Jewish Lens (PASSWORD REQUIRED FOR ACCESS)
    This section is intended for individuals who are trained and certified as a trainer of Youth Mental Health First Aid by the National Council of Behavioral Health and is password protected. If you are a trained Youth Mental Health First Aid trainer and would like access to Section 2 of the guide, please contact Josh Schwartz at to get the password. 

    NOTE: This guide refers to a number of Jewish sources which everyone can access and which we are making available separately:

    1. One page Jewish Source Sheet from The Jewish Education Project.

    2. An extensive collection of Jewish Sources, part of Jewish Teens Thrive. 

  3. Mental Health Resources for Teens & Families
    We have assembled a directory of National Resources and Organizations that you can turn to for further information and assistance that includes weblinks and phone numbers whenever possible. Currently, you’ll find both a National listing and a Regional listing for the New York area. We encourage other communities to share their local resources with us so that we can add them. 

  4. Jewish Youth Mental Health First Aid Trained Facilitators
    We strongly recommend that you consider a facilitator who understands the unique identity of your target audience. We encourage you to speak to any facilitator you choose to ensure that they are the correct fit for your community. Please note that only trained facilitators can access the YMHFA curriculum and the related Jewish scenarios and modules.

    Facilitators who are well acquainted with the community are better equipped to understand the lives and roles of the participants. They naturally understand the difference between an educator, a youth professional, and a camp professional; they speak a common language with training participants; and their knowledge and insight into the community enable them to naturally incorporate relevant examples throughout the 8-hour course.

    There are several paths you can take when deciding upon a facilitator (please see page 6 of Section 1 to see those). We recommend that you consult with Jewish trained YMHFA facilitators to identify if one of them may be the right fit for your community. To assist you, we provide a master list of known Jewish communal professionals who are certified as facilitators for the Youth Mental Health First Aid course. Please note that this list simply identifies who had received this training and is not intended to endorse or recommend anyone in particular.

If you have questions or would like further information, please contact Joshua Schwartz

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