February 09, 2007

Training available for area mental health providers

by Sun Min

CARBONDALE, Ill. – Southern Illinois University Carbondale is working to improve community-based mental health care. The Center for Rural Health and Social Service Development, part of SIUC's Office of Economic and Regional Development, will present the "Tuning Up Your Skills: Current Tools and Techniques of the Frontline Mental Health Practitioner" conference March 15-16 at John A. Logan College in Carterville.

Mental health professionals, counselors, social workers, educators, nurses and doctors are encouraged to attend the event, which will focus on topics that front-line mental health workers in Southern Illinois have identified as being their greatest needs in terms of training. The seminars will provide expert instruction on how to better serve persons with severe and persistent mental illness.

"This training is immensely important," said Tracey D. Williams, an administrator in the Illinois Department of Human Services' Division of Mental Health. "There are only a few pertinent mental health training events downstate for area mental health providers, and this training will help accommodate the needs of area providers."

The fee is $49, which includes registration and continuing education units. To register, call 618/453-1262 or visit http://www.siu.edu/~crhssd/train_calen.htm. The deadline is Feb. 22. For more information, contact conference coordinators Heather M. Hartung at hhartung@siu.edu or Tracey D. Williams at Tracey.D.Williams@illinois.gov.

The Center for Rural Health and Social Service Development brings together the resources of SIUC and area agencies to address the most pressing health and social service problems of the region. The group's mission is to develop healthier rural communities by identifying and addressing health concerns in partnership with those committed to improving health and social services.