This page contains a list of what’s happening, including upcoming conferences, new research, recently published articles of interest and much more. See the LIBRARY link for more details on reports, training, back issues of the newsletter and more.
Newsletter Current Issue
International Association of Peer Supporters (iNAPS)
– formerly the National Association of Peer Specialists (NAPS)
2013 National Peer Supporter Conference – Anaheim, California.
Mark your Calendars
August 27-28, 2013
The site of the 7th Annual National Peer Supporter Conference will be the Sheraton Garden Grove Anaheim South, Anaheim California – which is close to Disneyland and other attractions.
Lodging room rate will be $100 per night single/double. For more information and updates, visit the National Conference page:
Hope to see you there!
Update on the (U.S.) National Peer Supporter Standards of Practice
SURVEY ENDS on MONDAY, APRIL 15, 2013
iNAPS is currently gathering input on practice standards for peer supporters. The goal of this project is to establish nationally-recognized guidelines that define acceptable practice for the numerous emerging peer support disciplines. As an emerging profession, it is important to hear and learn from peer support providers themselves about what they consider to be the most important values.
The first stage of the process has been to gather input from peer support providers about the core values of peer support. This is well underway and has been done through a series of focus groups in various cities in the U.S. A survey about the core values of peer support is also available to anyone who would like to participate in the project.
If you have not already done so, please click the link above or visit the national standards project page on our website and complete this survey. (Pass this on to other peer supporters who would like to contribute ideas, stories, or other feedback on the process.)
This survey of core values will end at midnight on Friday, April 12th so we can analyze the results and begin the next step in the process of drafting practice standards based on peer input to the survey and focus groups about these core values.
To stay informed about the National Practice Standards project, send an email with JOIN in the subject line to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Peer Support Continuing Education (Webinar): Recovery Foundations for Peer Supporters
SAVE THE DATE: APRIL 23, 2013
12:00 Noon to 1:00 PM Eastern Time
(plan to log on 5 minutes early to download the free application)
A free webinar series designed to improve peer support knowledge and skills has been planned by the International Association of Peer Supporters (INAPS, formerly the National Association of Peer Specialists-NAPS) in collaboration with OptumHealth.
The series will launch with a webinar on vital recovery knowledge for working peer supporters. “This webinar will help ensure we are on the ‘same page’ regarding basic recovery principles and will be useful for subsequent webinars in the series,” according to Steve Harrington, executive director of INAPS.
The webinar series is a result of the Recovery to Practice Project for peer supporters and will draw on a comprehensive continuing education curriculum developed as part of that project.
“The goal of the project is to improve peer support,” Harrington said. “As part of the project, we obtained input from peer supporters across the country to learn what they felt were recovery knowledge gaps and for the last two years, have developed a curriculum to address those gaps.”
The webinar series will consist of eight, one-hour sessions delivered by a variety of experts involved in the Recovery to Practice project. The first webinar will be facilitated by Harrington. Additional webinars are planned to cover trauma-informed peer support, wellness, multi-cultural awareness, peer support roles and values, co-occurring disorders and recovery relationships.
“We hope some states will grant continuing education credits for participation,” Harrington said. “It will be the responsibility of participants to request such credits from state officials who certify peer supporters.”
Although the webinar series is designed for working peer supporters, it is open to anyone interested.
The webinar is set for 12:00 noon to 1 p.m., Eastern on Tuesday, April 23. There is no cost to participate. For a free certificate of completion, registration is required and can be accomplished by e-mailing: email@example.com and providing your name, address and e-mail address.
To participate, use the following link and telephone number:
To join the online meeting
Audio conference information
1-888-844-9902 access code 956 7295
Be certain to log onto the webinar about five minutes prior to beginning (11:55 AM) as it may be necessary to install a program to participate.
iNAPS and Partner Video Resources
A new resource page on the iNAPS website contains video resources that may be downloaded free of charge and used for recovery training and inspiration.
ALTERNATIVES CONFERENCE – (important message from Joseph Rogers)
Do you want a 2013 Alternatives conference?
If you want a 2013 Alternatives conference – the oldest national mental health conference organized by and for individuals with mental health diagnoses – you need to do something about it!
Since 1985, the annual Alternatives conferences have offered in-depth technical assistance on peer-delivered services and self-help/recovery methods. Beyond the exchange of knowledge and networking, the Alternatives conferences offer a rich social, artistic, and healing environment. When asked “one thing I learned that I will incorporate into my life and/or my work,” one Alternatives attendee responded, “We can influence the direction of the future.”
Now I’m asking YOU to influence the direction of the future! We have recently heard that, although the money for the conference has been allocated and the application submitted long ago, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) apparently does not understand the importance of this national gathering and is dragging its feet on letting the conference move forward.
HHS seems not to understand that the federal allocation for the Alternatives conference is only a portion – albeit a necessary one – of the cost of the conference. The rest is made up by allocations from the states and from nonprofit agencies, as well as from the individuals who attend the conference – you!
If you want to see Alternatives 2013 take place, please contact HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius at Kathleen.Sebelius@hhs.gov or call 202-690-7000or write U.S. Dept. of HHS, Attn: Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, 2000 Independence Ave., SW, Washington, DC 20201, and explain the vital importance of the Alternatives conferences to our movement.
There may not be an Alternatives 2013, unless we work to make it happen! I urge you to contact Secretary Sebelius and make it happen!
Chief Advocacy Officer
Mental Health Association of SE PA
National Mental Health Consumers’ Self-Help Clearinghouse
http://www.facebook.com/jar08034 | https://twitter.com/jar08034
The Key Update
The Key Update is the free monthly e-newsletter of the National Mental Health Consumers’ Self-Help Clearinghouse Volume 9 No.9, March 2013, http://www.mhselfhelp.org. This is a great way to stay up to date on current news and events. To register, visit: http://www.mhselfhelp.org/register/register.php
PAST EVENTS OF INTEREST
On January 1, 2013 – the National Association of Peer Specialists was renamed to the International Association of Peer Support (iNAPS). The name change reflects the global membership of those outside the United States who have attended the conferences and signed up to be involved. The name change also reflects the broader application of peer support to assist individuals in a recovery process across many disciplines and circumstances including mental health, trauma, addiction and substance use, corrections, homelessness, and more.
Interim Task Force to Establish National Practice Standards and Certification
by Peer Supporters / for Supporters
Visit the National Standards page on this site for more information.
This week is National Wellness Week
6th Annual Peer Specialist Conference a Success!
September 6-8, 2012 – Philadelphia, PA
The week was filled with energy and enthusiasm for the reality of recovery! Keynote presenters spoke about the past, present, and future of recovery and the special place of peer specialists in individual and system transformation. Special awards were given to Sue Bergeson, Michael Hogan, Wilma Townsend, Gladys Christian, and Steve Harrington.
Gayle Bluebird honors Steve Harrington with the Super Connector award
Wilma Townsend, Acting Director of Consumer Affairs at SAMHSA receives a Lifetime Achievement Award as a True Champion of Peer Support.
Joseph Rogers keynote address about the peer support movement
New York Times Series
– Lives Restored: Managing Severe Mental Illness
Three members of NAPS were recently featured in this New York Times series.
Part 3: Finding a Life that Fits (Keris Jän Myrick)
Part 5: After Drugs and Dark Times, Helping Others to Stand Back Up
(Antonio Lambert – keynote at the 2011 NAPS National Conference)
Successful Regional Collaboration – Northeast Behavioral Health Partnership
Peer Specialist Code of Ethics and Professional Standards (Summary)
A committee of clients, family members, supervisors, and Peer Specialists from Northeast Behavioral Health Partnership (NBHP), a Colorado Behavioral Health Organization (BHO), collaborated together extensively to establish professional guidelines and a code of ethics for Peer Specialists.
Using researched sources of Ethics and Professional Standards from professional associations across the country, the group and its various subcommittees worked diligently over several months to create a comprehensive document. This document would assist agencies who hire or supervise Peer Specialists or Peer Volunteers to create clear expectations and boundaries for the Peers chosen to work in their programs while also meeting the needs, perceptions, values, and beliefs of the region. Monthly feedback and input was sought from local and regional groups at all levels within the BHO, and final approval was given by these same groups.
The committee is now working to spread the word about the resulting document, in an effort to assist others as they create their own Peer Specialist programs. A copy of the full article about this process, as well as the documents that were created, can be found by linking to these items on the NBHP website:
SAMHSA 10×10 Wellness Campaign
National Wellness Week was September 19-25, 2011.
For more information visit www.10×10.samhsa.gov
Line Dance for Wellness
September 23, 2011
10:10 AM and 10:10 PM – Wherever you are USA!
Thousands of people across the country got up and moved to their favorite tune in the Line Dance for Wellness. It was a grove in solidarity with a pledge to reduce mortality by 10 years in 10 years for people with mental and substance use disorders.
Wellness Works Initiative
As part of National Wellness Week (Sept 19-25, 2011), the National Coalition for Mental Health Recovery and the consumer-run and consumer-supporter technical assistance centers—the National Empowerment Center, the National Mental Health Consumers’ Self Help Clearinghouse, the Peerlink Technical Assistance Centerthe Café TA Center, and the NAMI STAR Center – invited peers to submit a piece of original creative work expressing what wellness meant in their lives and communities.
Submissions helped raise public awareness about the importance of embracing a wellness-based perspective, in mental health services as well as in our communities at large.
Click here for more information www.power2u.org/wellnessworks.html.
Situational Analysis of Peer Specialists Services
for the Recovery to Practice (RTP) Project
This document provides valuable information about the state of the peer specialist profession across the U.S.
Colorado Joins the growing list of State Affiliates!
A new peer group in Colorado, WE CAN, has joined NAPS as an affiliate. Congratulations!http://www.mhacolorado.org/page/wecan