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National Coalition for Mental Health Recovery | NCMHR

National Coalition News (NCN)

September - October 2011 Newsletter

From the Director

I hope you had an enjoyable and relaxing summer. The National Coalition provided two very successful Emotional CPR (eCPR) certification trainings in August: one in Nebraska and one in Texas. And already Fall 2011 is upon us. September and October will be exciting months.

On September 21, we will be joining over 1000 national disability advocates to advocate for Congress to contain Medicaid spending while supporting our right to live in the most integrated setting and control our lives. I encourage you to take some time to read the ADAPT proposals by clicking here. If you can make it to Washington for the rally, please join mental health advocates beforehand for a networking gathering. See “events” section below for details.

Also, we are a proud co-sponsor of the first National Wellness Week, which is September 19-25. We hope you will help showcase the creative and visionary talents of our movement by submitting an original creative piece to our Wellness Works Initiative. More details below under “news,” or click here.

In October, we are gearing up for another exciting and inspiring Alternatives Conference in Orlando, FL, where we will be presenting two eCPR workshops, one of which is in collaboration with law enforcement. We will also be having our Annual Meeting October 27 from 6:00 - 9:00 pm where we will announce the results of our first election for regional Board seats, give the annual Judi Chamberlin Joy in Advocacy Award and share other exciting happenings.

Here’s hoping this fall is a happy and productive one for you.

All the best,

Lauren Spiro

Lauren Spiro

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Wellness Works Initiative: Submit Your Creative Work!

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 Center, the Café TA Center, and the NAMI STAR Center – invite you to submit a piece of original creative work expressing what wellness means in your lives and for your communities. Submissions are due by September 12, 2011. Your submissions will help raise public awareness about the importance of embracing a wellness-based perspective, in mental health services as well as in our communities at large. For more information on the Wellness Works Initiative, click here.

Submit Your Nomination for the 2011 Judi Chamberlin Joy in Advocacy Award

The National Coalition for Mental Health Recovery (NCMHR) honors one individual a year with the Judi Chamberlin Joy in Advocacy Award. This award recognizes Judi’s lifetime of joyful dedication to bringing hope into the lives of individuals labeled with mental illnesses around the world. Click here for nomination guidelines and more information.

Emotional CPR: New Jersey Participants Reflect on their Training Experience

One participant wrote: "The skills learned with eCPR can teach a compassionate alternative to hospitalization, be used as a way to resolve a crisis, or even assist us help anyone we meet who seems to be having an emotional crisis."  Click here to read the article.

Foundation for Excellence in Mental Health Care – The New Mainstream!

The Foundation’s mission is to promote better mental health outcomes.
We do so by identifying, developing, and sharing knowledge with the public about mental health care that best helps people recover and live well in society.

We promote improvements in mental health care by sponsoring research and the development of programs designed to help people thrive--physically, mentally, socially and spiritually. Click here to learn more about the Foundation.

New Madness Radio Podcast Available: Suicidal Feelings with David Webb

Click here to go to this episode on the Madness Radio site.

How common are suicidal feelings? Is a psychiatric illness behind suicidal despair -- or a meaningful and even spiritual life crisis? Does forced hospitalization really provide help? Suicide attempt survivor David Webb, author of Thinking About Suicide: Contemplating and Comprehending the Urge to Die, discusses how speaking openly about suicidal feelings, rather than reacting with panic and fear, is the best form of suicide prevention.

http://thinkingaboutsuicide.org/ For more info -- http://www.madnessradio.net

Next MindFreedom Mad Pride Free Live Radio Show!

Listen and call in to talk with psychiatric survivors, dissident mental health professionals and others who want a nonviolent revolution in the mental health system! Click here to listen to the September show. Also check out the August interview with Lauren Tenney and Bruce Levine by clicking here.

NCD Urges Elimination of Electric Shock and Other Aversive Punishments

Washington, DC –The National Council on Disability (NCD), an independent federal agency that advises the President, Congress, and other federal officials and entities on policies and programs affecting Americans with disabilities, submitted comments today supporting amendments to regulations proposed by the Massachusetts Department of Developmental Services to restrict electric shock and other aversive punishments for students with disabilities. To read the entire news release, click here.



September 19th, 2011 - 2:00 - 3:30 PM EST 

Vet2Vet and Vets4Warriors: Peer Navigator Support for Military Families


In 2008, a RAND study indicated that as many as 20% of Iraq/Afghanistan veterans experience PTSD, depression, related anxiety disorders, or some form of substance abuse. At a February, 2011 veterans mental health conference hosted by MHA, national subject matter experts acknowledged that any response to this urgent problem should include three critical elements: a network of trained/certified military peer specialists to welcome and encourage those who ask for help; training to enable those peers to function as local "system navigators" who are familiar with the services available in each client's community; and an assertive outreach program. This webinar will present the behavioral health needs and challenges of serving military families and highlight the work of University of Medicine and Dentistry's Vet2Vet and Vets4Warriors programs as models for addressing the behavioral health needs of military families.

Presenters: Rhonda Robinson Beale, MD, Chief Medical Officer, OptumHealth Behavioral Solutions; Cherie Castellano, M.A., C.S.W., L.P.C., Program Director, Cop2Cop, UMDNJ; Terrell McCain, Program Manager, Vet2Vet, UMDNJ

Questions? Email ssteverman@mentalhealthamerica.net or call 703.684.7722.

Can't be there?  A recorded version of the webinar will be available on Mental Health America's website at a later date.

September 18-21, 2011

The Temple University Collaborative on Community Inclusion of Individuals with Psychiatric Disabilities has now opened online registration for its Second International Research Conference on Community Inclusion Of Individuals with Psychiatric Disabilities. This conference is a must for persons in recovery, researchers, administrators, policymakers, funders, providers, family members, students, advocates and others who are interested in cutting edge research and innovative practices that promote community integration and broaden community participation. Click here for more information on consumer scholarships (PDF, 92KB, 3 pages).

September 26, 2011, 3 p.m.–4:30 p.m. EST

Demystifying Trauma: Sharing Pathways to Healing and Wellness 

Click here to register. Registration will close at 5 p.m. eastern time, on Sunday, September 25, 2011.

Richard Mollica, M.D., M.A.R., Director of the Harvard Program in Refugee Trauma of Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School;
Beth Filson, M.F.A., CPS, Trainer and Curriculum Developer in Trauma-informed Peer Support and Peer Workforce;
Elizabeth Hudson, M.S.W., LCSW, Trauma Services Coordinator, University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Medicine and Public Health, with the Wisconsin Department of Health Services

You will learn how traumatic experiences and their impact are a nearly universal experience and how broad the impact can be on mind, body, spirit, and relationships. However, healing from these experiences is very unique to the individual. You will learn the power of a personal story in the recovery from trauma, recognize the value of the “person as teacher,” and recognize the value of being an active listener. Relationships, especially peer support, can be a source of strength and transformation after trauma. Learn how to build peer relationships based on mutual needs. Gain strategies and techniques for listening in a way that is supportive and compassionate, but also allows listeners to cope with the emotional responses that may be triggered by painful stories.

September 28, 2011, 1:00 - 2:30 pm EST

National Empowerment Center's Peer-Run Respite Webinar Series: So You Want to Start a Peer-Run Respite? Options and Important Considerations

National Empowerment Center’s Peer-Run Respite Webinar Series
With Steve Miccio, Daniel Hazen, Dan Fisher, and Rigel Flaherty

Click here to register

Peer-Run Respites/Hospital Diversion are increasing in numbers and having positive results across the country. Peer-run respites offer an alternative to traditional mental health hospitalization, are operated by peers, and are cost-effective. The purpose of the first webinar in this series will be to address specific issues around starting up, maintaining, and sustaining quality peer-run respites. Panelists will provide practical tips and suggestions on advocacy, funding, core values and principles, and staffing issues, among others.

October 6, 2011, 3 - 4:30 p.m. EST

Step 4 in the Recovery-Oriented Care Continuum: Graduation Date
Click here to register.

In the final Webinar of a series on the continuum of recovery-oriented care, we focus on a relatively new but important concept: an individual's "graduation" from formal services, which often involves a transition to less formal community-based supports.

If people can recover from or learn to cope with serious mental illnesses, how can mental health professionals plan for this transition from the very beginning of treatment? Please join us and our presenters, Antonio Lambert, CPS, RTP Specialist for the National Association of Peer Specialists, Wes Sowers, MD, Director of the Center for Public Service Psychiatry at Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic, and Lauren Spiro, Director of the National Coalition for Mental Health Recovery, to discuss how we can help people graduate from care when it may no longer be needed. We will address options and alternatives for individuals who wish to move on from formal services and—more importantly—how we can help ensure that those who have optimally benefited from treatment have a meaningful life to return to.

For more information on SAMHSA's Recovery to Practice project, please contact the RTP Technical Assistance Center at recoverytopractice@dsgonline.com or 877.584.8535.

Conferences/Face-to-Face Events

September 18-21, 2011

The Temple University Collaborative on Community Inclusion of Individuals with Psychiatric Disabilities has now opened online registration for its Second International Research Conference on Community Inclusion Of Individuals with Psychiatric Disabilities. This conference is a must for persons in recovery, researchers, administrators, policymakers, funders, providers, family members, students, advocates and others who are interested in cutting edge research and innovative practices that promote community integration and broaden community participation. Click here for more information on consumer scholarships (PDF, 92KB, 3 pages).

September 21, 2011, 10:30 AM – 3:00 PM

Washington, DC
Rally for Real Medicaid Reform
Join cross-disability, aging and civil rights groups on the steps of the Capitol in Washington DC, on Wednesday September 21st at Noon. Mental health advocates are meeting at the Hotel Harrington, 436 11th St., NW, DC at 10:30 AM for a networking gathering before the noon rally.

Please feel free to bring snacks and drinks to share. For more info on the rally click here. For local contact information, click here.

October 26 - 30, 2011

Alternatives 2011 to Be Held in Orlando, FL

Alternatives 2011, the annual national conference organized by and for individuals with psychiatric histories, will be held from Wednesday, Oct. 26, 2011, through Sunday, Oct. 30, 2011, at the Caribe Royale Orlando in Orlando, Fla. Alternatives 2011 is being organized by the National Mental Health Consumers' Self-Help Clearinghouse, a peer-run national technical assistance center funded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Center for Mental Health Services. www.alternatives2011.org

Pre-Conference Arts Carnival

A Carnival of the Arts will be held on Wednesday, Oct. 26, from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m., before the opening session of Alternatives 2011 that evening, at the Caribe Royale in Orlando, Florida. Throughout a hotel ballroom, booths will be devoted to such activities as straw painting, “Soul Collage,” palm reading, acting, poetry, and others. There will also be special events, including an Open Mic session led by award-winning performer Mike Skinner, and a theater workshop taught by Elizabeth Kenney, who will perform her acclaimed one-woman play, “Sick,” on Thursday evening. If you have a talent to contribute, whether traditional or quirky – such as juggling, making balloon animals, or doing magic tricks – and would like to staff a booth, please contact Amy Smith at crazydiamondusa@gmail.com . To contribute artwork for the virtual art exhibit, to be shown during the conference, click here. 

October 28-29, 2011 – Los Angeles, CA

Alternatives to Biological Psychiatry: If We Don’t Medicate, What Do We Do? The annual conference of the International Society for the Study of Ethical Psychology and Psychiatry

For more info, download our brochure / click here to register for conference!

Topics Include: Safe, humane, life-enhancing methods of treating adults, children, families and couples in psychological distress without reliance on psychotropic drugs; Consumer-centered interventions that help people move towards full recovery; What parents and families can do to help children without reliance on psychotropic drugs.

November 3-4, 2011

Challenging Our Understanding of Psychosis and Exploring Alternatives for Recovery INTAR (International Network Toward Alternatives for Recovery)

University of Toronto, Hart House - For more information, click here to visit INTAR’s website. Email Brian McKinnon or call 416-285-7996, Ext. 227.