The purpose of the Regional Mental Health Awareness Training (MHAT) Grant Program is to increase the capacity of the Johnston, Murray, and Pontotoc County communities in responding to and interacting with individuals in crisis or with other mental health and behavioral health issues. This program will train individuals in the community, including teachers, parents, law enforcement, faith-based leaders, youth group leaders, tribal partners, veterans and families, and more, to improve mental health awareness and understanding. The program will also serve as a connection resource to better link individuals and families with mental health or behavioral issues to appropriate services.

Upcoming trainings - Mental Health First Aid trainings are available again. Please contact us to find out more about live, virtual or blended trainings. Contact Holli Witherington at or Bailey Talkington at

  • Wednesday April 28, 2021 at East Central University campus from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. See additional details and register here!

  • Save the date for trainings on the following dates! More details coming soon!

    • Tuesday June 15, 2021 at ECU
    • Thursday July 8, 2021 at ECU
    • Wednesday August 25, 2021 at ECU

*CEU's available!

Contact us to schedule a Mental Health First Aid training for your agency or group!

We are open to providing this training for professional development to faculty and staff in local school districts, to behavioral health or youth-serving agencies, veteran and veteran serving organizations, faith-based communities, camp staff, foster parents, general community members, etc. 

If you would like more information about scheduling a training, please let us know. Grant staff can also come to YOU and provide a free presentation about the topics covered in the program. Contact Holli Witherington at or 580-559-5815 or Bailey Talkington at or 580-559-5161 with any questions or concerns.

The main requirements are that it have a minimum of 15 registrants (maximum of 30) and take place in our region! 

We can offer the following Mental Health First Aid programs:   

  • Adult Mental Health First Aid: recommended for any and all adults.
  • Youth Mental Health First Aid: for adults who interact with youth ages 12-18 in any personal and professional capacity.
  • Mental Health First Aid for Higher Education: which is tailored to college and university faculty, staff, and students as mental health illnesses and substance use challenges often present during late adolescence and young adulthood.
  • Mental Health First Aid for Older Adults: focuses on the aging population as even "mild" mental illness symptoms can have catastrophic consequences in vulnerable older adults.
  • Mental Health First Aid for Public Safety: this course aims to address some of the unique needs and experiences of law enforcement and correctional officers with hopes of improving the interaction of the criminal justice system and individuals with mental health and substance abuse challenges.
  • Mental Health First Aid for Veterans, Servicemembers, and their Families: which provides insight and information regarding how to engage with veterans with mental illnesses and substance use issues and the impact on veteran families.



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In the News:


CLICK HERE for the Article



Regional MHAT Resource Manual (Click Here)

Other Helpful Links:

Mental Health First Aid website

Crisis Text Line

Love Is Respect


American Foundation for Suicide Prevention

The Trevor Project

Celebrate Recovery

Chickasaw Nation Services Directory

Ada Homeless Services

Ada Boys and Girls Club

Pontotoc County Drug Free Coalition