Classes, trainings, and talks


Mental Health Speaker Seriesabstrect image of gears in the brain

Connections is hosting six weeks of dinner and mental health education courses at no cost to community members. Learn about important behavioral health issues in our community and how you can help yourself and others cope with these issues. All presentations are on Thursdays, 5:30 - 6:30 p.m., at the Health District offices, 120 Bristlecone Drive, Fort Collins. Presentations are free, but registration is required. To register, click the links below or contact Emily Leetham, 970-530-2883,

  • Female Sexuality and Well-being - April 2. CANCELED. Learn about female sexual health and pleasure by exploring its complexities. Discussion will include how to shift away from shame to embodiment and empowerment. This presentation contains mature content. Presenter: Dori Lewis, Ed.M, LPC
  • Substance Use: Alcohol - April 9. CANCELED. Learn about the risks of alcohol use, the social construction of recovery and harm reduction, and how misinformation and language influence society's perceptions. Presenter: Danielle Willis, LCSW, LAC
  • Grief and Loss - April 16. CANCELED. Explore expected responses to loss and how you can help yourself or someone you care for through the grief process. Learn about factors that impact our grief experience and healthy ways of coping. Presenters: Tammy Brennan-Smith, LCSW, and Daniel Rifkin, LPC
  • Anxiety - April 23. CANCELED. Learn how to identify signs and symptoms of anxiety, increase awareness of how it impacts the brain and the body, and gain helpful tips for responding to anxiety in healthy ways. Presenter: John G. Rowe, LCSW.


Mental Health First Aid

Mental health first aid logoMental Health First Aid is an 8-hour, evidence-based course that introduces participants to risk factors and warning signs of mental health problems; builds understanding of their impact and provides an overview of appropriate supports. Participants learn how to offer initial help in a mental health crisis and connect people to the appropriate professional, peer, social and self-help care.

Those who practice mental health first aid do not diagnose or provide any counseling or therapy. Instead, the program offers people concrete tools and answers key questions such as “What do I do?” and “Where can someone find help?”

The program also teaches common risk factors and warning signs of specific illnesses such as anxiety, depression, substance use, bipolar disorder and schizophrenia.

Youth Mental Health First Aid is primarily designed for adults who regularly interact with young people, such as parents, family members, caregivers, teachers, school staff, peers, neighbors, health and human services workers, and other community providers.

The course introduces common mental health challenges for youth, reviews typical adolescent development, and teaches a 5-step action plan for how to help young people in both crisis and non-crisis situations.

Topics covered include anxiety, depression, substance use, disorders in which psychosis may occur, and disruptive disorders (including attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder).

These trainings are free, but space is limited. Snacks are included. All trainings are held at the Health District, 120 Bristlecone Drive, Fort Collins, unless otherwise noted. or more information or to reserve a spot, contact Ana Pasini at 970-530-2842 or

Upcoming trainings:

  • April 2, 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. (Youth-focused) CANCELED


Suicide prevention training

Connections offers free suicide-prevention training. This hour-long program is held monthly at the Health District offices, 120 Bristlecone Drive, Fort Collins.

Called QPR Training, the suicide-prevention training teaches participants how to question people about suicide, persuade them to accept professional help, and refer them to community resources. Key subjects covered include:

  • How to get help for yourself or learn more about preventing suicide
  • The common causes of suicidal behavior
  • The warning signs of suicide
  • How to get help for someone in crisis

Upcoming trainings

  • None is currently scheduled.

There is no cost, but registration is required. For questions or more information, please contact Ana Pasini at or 970-530-2842. Light snacks will be provided. Feel free to bring a sack lunch.


sad toddler on teddy bearWorkshops for Parents taught by CAYAC staff

  • ADHD in Children
    Sat., April 4, 9 a.m. - 1 p.m.

Both workshops are held at the Child, Adolescent, and Young Adult Connections (CAYAC) office, 425 W. Mulberry, Suite 112, Fort Collins. Attend one or both. Cost is $40 per family. Scholarships available upon request. Lunch provided. No childcare is available. RSVP to Ana Pasini at or 970-530-2842.