The Train Respond and Connect Early (TRACE) project is a mental health awareness initiative that will train Boys & Girls Club (BGC) staff across North Carolina in Youth Mental Health First Aid (YMHFA). The goal of the project is to increase mental health awareness among BGC staff that will result in early detection and intervention for youth in need of mental health services.
By the end of the third year, the project seeks to train 300 BGC staff and increase the mental health services they provide to youth. Using a quasi-experimental design, with a waitlist control group, data will be collected from the staff at baseline and every 3 months for one year after the training to examine the effectiveness of the training on increasing mental health referrals and support provided to youth.
The project activities are divided into three phases:
- Phase 1 is the formative phase of the project. One hundred staff will be trained in YMHFA, and efforts will focus on ensuring project activities are feasible and appropriate for full implementation.
- Phase 2 is full implementation. Two hundred staff members will be trained, and process and outcome evaluations will be conducted to ensure the project is meeting its goals and objectives.
- Phase 3 focuses on sustainability. Thirty staff will be trained as YMHFA instructors to continue mental health awareness among staff within the Boys & Girls Club after the grant period.