Mental Health & Rehabilitation eCast June 2009

The Mental Health & Rehabilitation eCast is a monthly emailed newsletter with the purpose of informing mental health and rehabilitation networks worldwide about the activities and resources produced by the Center for Psychiatric Rehabilitation as well as for disseminating general mental health and rehabilitation news.


Curriculum for Training
Personal Assistance Service Providers

The purpose of a personal assistant (PA) is to perform, or help to perform, those things that the person is unable to do, or has difficulty with, due to a disability. The Personal Assistance Services (PAS) Curriculum, developed by Boston University’s Center for Psychiatric Rehabilitation, delivers training that prepares individuals to become PAS providers for those with psychiatric disabilities. The curriculum is designed to be used by other individuals with disabilities, mental health workers, as well as those with no expertise in mental health. Included are a knowledge base component as well as three skill building components (Coaching, Collaborating and Managing Crises), each with a trainer guide and participant workbook.

The PAS Curriculum is free and is available for download from the Center’s website at /resources/pas-curriculum.


10 Tools to “Live your Life WellSM

Live Your Life Well is a national public education campaign dedicated to helping people better cope with stress and enhance their well-being. Stress can take a huge toll on a person’s health, mood, productivity and relationships; but specific, evidence-based tools can help counterbalance these effects. The non-profit Mental Health America has created Live Your Life Well to increase the number of people who take action to protect their mental health, both in the face of ongoing stress and in times of great personal challenge. Find out more at


Results on Certified Peer Specialist
Job Titles and Job Descriptions

A report recently released by the UPenn Collaborative presents the job titles and descriptions that were provided by 275 respondents who responded to a brief online survey of certified peer specialists (CPS) working in paid positions in the United States. The goal is to give peers and other stakeholders a sense of the wide variety of job titles that CPS workers have and the description of their jobs, in the providers’ own words. Download the “Results from a National Survey of Certified Peer Specialist Job Titles and Job Descriptions: Evidence of a Versatile Behavioral Health Workforce” at .


Free Webcast on Consumer Integration:
Why It Matters, How It Works

This webcast on Thursday, July 9, 2009 at 12:00pm ET will highlight principles of recovery and benefits and common barriers to participation as they relate to consumer integration. The presenters will also discuss potential roles for people formerly or currently experiencing homelessness. This two-part Webcast series on consumer integration, through the Homelessness Resource Center, will feature Laura Prescott, Founder and President, Sister Witness International; Gloria Dickerson, Recovery Specialist, Center for Social Innovation; and Steven Samra, Veterans Services Coordinator, Operation Standdown. Direct service providers, outreach workers, case managers, peer support specialists, project directors, team leaders and policy makers can all benefit from this webcast. Register at…false&siteurl=center4si


Bringing Together Training in Research,
Clinical Experience and Psychiatric Rehabilitation

Current career paths do not usually bring together clinical experience and research expertise for the same person within the field of psychiatric rehabilitation. To bridge the gap between “science and service” it is imperative to train researchers who have clinical knowledge with the knowledge needed to construct meaningful and rigorous evaluations of psychiatric rehabilitation interventions. To that end, the Center for Psychiatric Rehabilitation, with funding from the National Institute on Disability Research and Rehabilitation (NIDRR), created the Postdoctoral Research Fellowship in Mental Health. Fellows are trained through seminars, research practicum, and mentorship. Learn more about the present Fellows and the program in the current issue of the Recovery and Rehabilitation Newsletter, available online at /resources/newsletter.


New NIMH Video Describes Depression, Importance of Treatment

A new 4-minute video from the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) provides an overview for the general public on the symptoms, impact, and treatment of depression. The video is available for viewing by individuals or can be used by community groups or in health care offices to inform viewers about depression and its consequences, and the critical importance of seeking treatment. The NIMH video features first-person narrative describing an individual’s experience with depression, and depictions of others dealing with symptoms of the illness. It illustrates research underway and gives examples of treatments available for depression. Importantly, the video urges viewers with symptoms to confide in friends or family members and to seek treatment.

Included with the video is a “How to Use” fact sheet that outlines key points in the video, audiences it can be used for, and suggestions for how to use it in a public setting.  View the video at .


Peer-Centered Perspective Featured at Conference

Find empowerment through “Peer Connections” this September as the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance (DBSA) hosts a conference of compelling keynote presentations, educational workshops, and pre- and post-conference institutes. DBSA offers a unique peer-centered perspective for individuals living with depression or bipolar disorder, as well as for family members or health care providers looking for ways to best help their loved ones, patients, or clients by partnering with them on their path to recovery. The conference is being held September 10-13, 2009 in Indianapolis, Indiana. Find out more at

Also, DBSA has announced that the Center for Mental Health Services, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, will offer financial support to some consumers who want to attend its annual conference. Information is available at

Scholarship applications need to be completed and postmarked by July 10th.


Thank you from the makers of the eCast

We were very pleased that over 500 of you responded to our survey! Thank you so much. Your input will help guide us as we move forward with our many efforts. If you were one of the respondents that asked us a question, we are sorry to say that since the survey was anonymous we are not able to reply to you. We would like to respond to your questions. Any questions can be submitted along with your email address through the Center’s Contact page at And, once again, thank you.


This eCast is jointly supported by the Center for Mental Health Services (CMHS), Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration and the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR), Department of Education.