No one can understand mental health challenges quite like someone who has faced them. Our Peer Education & Training Program meets national certification standards, is accredited by Mental Health America, and teaches people with lived experience to become Peer Support Specialists, so they too can help others.
Our educational programs are grounded in the core competencies of peer support: recovery-oriented, person-centered, voluntary, relationship-focused, and trauma-informed.
What Peer Specialists Learn
Sharing lived experience
Major diagnoses and common treatment approaches
Understanding how psychiatric medications work, as well as their potential side effects
The Peer Education & Training Program also provides students with a list of community resources in english and spanish they can access themselves, or for their clients.
Our courses are designed so graduates can apply for any position that is described as a peer position or, specifically, a Peer Support Specialist position. Programs working with mental health and substance use issues are increasingly using peers in key positions. The combination of Peer Education & Training, alongside lived experience, creates a powerful support for people on the path to recovery.
Community Action Marin’s Mental Health Peer Education program provides a combination of remote, in person, and experiential learning opportunities. The learning modules are designed to support realistic preparedness in entering the mental health workforce after completion, including substance use, understanding the mental health system, and documentation.
Each module is designed to be implemented fully in person during times with there are no safety and health restrictions relating to COVID-19; as well as, full implementation capacity through zoom. We will also offer a hybrid model for those that would like a combination of online and in person structures. In this format, most of the lesson plans will be implemented through zoom with experiential role play exercises in person.
All classes are 2 hours and meet 2 times cach week. 1 hour of experiential practice is integrated into the curriculum.
Peer Education & Training Program Modules
This module is an introduction to peer work including; principles of recovery, boundaries, and the peer relationship.
Building on our Introductory course, this module integrates ethical standards of care, cultural competency standards, Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT), Motivational Interviewing (MI), harm reduction, trauma-informed care, and conflict management.
This module focuses on the classification of dx, the peer role, and reducing Mental Health stigma.
In this module, students receive an overview of different medication classifications and learn about medication management, and advocacy.
During this module, students will receive an overview of diagnoses and learn about understanding triggers, relapse, stages of change, and recovery language The principles. of Motivational Interviewing (MI) and harm reduction techniques will also be included.
Module 6 covers a brief hx of Transitional Age Youth (TAY )work with time spent identifying unique challenges, the peer role, boundaries, and recovery principles. This section also includes a component of LGTBQ, homelessness, and first psychosis.
During Module 7, we will provide an overview of Medi-Cal/Medicaid and Specialty Mental Health standards of care, the peer role, advocacy, and best practices. This course will also integrate current documentation standards in goal-oriented treatment planning, progress notes, and collaborative treatment conferences.
This last Module is an introduction to family-centered work with an emphasis on care to family members of a loved one with a mental health diagnosis; including case management, advocacy, an overview of systems care, and group co-facilitation.
Reach out to Esmerelda Garcia, Mental Health Education & Program Support Manager at Community Action Marin, by clicking the email link below.