LANSING, Mich – Despite questionable weather, more than 100 mental health professionals attended a University of Michigan TRAILS training opportunity in Lansing to learn how to utilize cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and mindfulness to help kids struggling with anxiety and depression. The TRAILS Program seeks to make effective mental health services accessible in all schools.
Led by Elizabeth Koschmann, PhD, the free event was the culmination of more than a year of CBT and mindfulness trainings that saw the TRAILS team traveling throughout the state. In total, five statewide TRAILS trainings provided nearly 400 participants with evidence-based tools, resources and hands-on activities that they are now able to utilize in their individual communities. Additionally, nearly 150 mental health professionals are working to become official TRAILS coaches. These coaches, after consultation and additional training, will be paired with a school in their home county where they will work alongside school professionals to facilitate CBT and mindfulness skills groups for students.
Thanks to a multi-million-dollar R01 grant from the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), the TRAILS program will be trialed in 100 public high schools across Michigan, serving 2,000 students. Principal investigator Amy Kilbourne, PhD, will oversee the data collection and program evaluation that will help provide a roadmap for expansion of TRAILS into even more schools – because effective mental health care should be within reach for every student.
To learn more about TRAILS, visit www.trailstowellness.org.