Peer-to-Peer is a 8-10-week, 2 1/2 hr. class taught by a team of two trained “Mentors” and a volunteer support person who are personally experienced at living well with mental illness. . This is a unique, experiential learning program for people with any serious mental illness who are interested in establishing and maintaining their wellness and recovery. Participants come away from the course with a binder of hand-out materials, as well as many other tangible resources: an advance directive; a “relapse prevention plan” to help identify tell-tale feelings, thoughts, behavior, or events that may warn of impending relapse and to organize for intervention; mindfulness exercises to help focus and calm thinking; and
Peer-to-Peer Course Topics Include:
1. Mental illnesses as traumatic experiences; Consumer stages of recovery.
2. “It’s not my fault”- mental illnesses as no-blame disorders; Brain biology and research.
3. The challenges and benefits of medication; Relapse prevention.
4. Storytelling- sharing of personal experiences.
5. Information and discussion about various mental illnesses including Schizophrenia, Depression, Bipolar Disorder, Schizo-effective Disorder, Borderline Personality Disorder.
6. Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Panic Disorder, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Dual Diagnosis.
7. Relapse prevention; Substance abuse and addiction; The role of acceptance in recovery.
8. Understanding emotions; Experiences of joy; Spirituality; Physical health and mental health.
9. Suicide and prevention, Surviving a hospital stay, Advance Directive for Mental Healthcare.
10. Hot buttons and triggers, Working with providers, Incarceration- survival and preparedness.