Who:Institute for Recovery & Community Integration
What: VeteransCPS Training - Philadelphia, PA
When: October 19-23 & October 26-30,2015
Location: MHASP, Philadelphia, PA
Contact: Bob Turri - 267-507-3803 or rturri@mhasp.org
Fax: 215-636-6328

Certified Peer Specialist Training Course

10 day session, minimum 15 participants – maximum 20 participants

The Certified Peer Specialist curriculum focuses on the principles and philosophy of recovery. The course facilitates learning by relating each session of the training encounter to the participants’ personal experience of recovery and provides practice in the core skills of peer-to-peer support. The curriculum is presented within a three-part framework, which emphasizes:

1. Principles of Recovery and Peer Support

The content of the CPS training course is centered on the principles of the recovery model of behavioral health and on the core values and practices that should guide peer-to-peer mental health support. By relating all of these concepts to the participants’ personal experiences, this interactive course ensures an enduring understanding of recovery and peer support by participants, not just a rote or superficial grasp of course material.

2. Essential Skills of Peer Support

The training sessions progress so that participants learn to translate the concepts of recovery and peer support into the specific skills and attitudes required for success with peers. Skill development is an explicit focus, with time allotted for addressing several discreet competencies, such as active listening, group facilitation, providing peer support to special populations and workplace practices.

3. Experiential Group Process

Training sessions are designed for participants to learn in a variety of ways—primarily through direct, personal experience, rather than by lecture. The curriculum is implemented through dynamic and engaging methods, which include role-playing simulations of peer support practice situations, instructor feedback, individual reflection as well as group dialogue and discussion.

By participating in the training, participants will:
• gain new knowledge and understanding;
• develop new skills;
• increase personal awareness;
• enhance personal recovery;
• receive certificate of completion.


4. CPS Course Completion Process:

Graduates of our Certified Peer Specialist Program attain skills and knowledge that are recognized at the federal level by the Center for Medicaid Services. The Institute’s standards meet or exceed of the training requirements of all existing Peer Support curricula in the United States. The Institute’s training program ensures that Certified Peer Specialist graduates have a solid foundation to begin their careers in behavioral health. Graduates are trained and prepared to inspire and provide peer support other people in their recovery journey.


The Institute’s curriculum and course completion process has been reviewed and endorsed by Pro-Act, an addictions advocacy organization; Sherry Mead, a national leader in the Peer Support movement; and the UPenn Collaborative on Community Integration program. In completing the Certified Peer Support course, participants also meet the prerequisites set by the Copeland Center for becoming Certified WRAP® facilitators.

If you represent an organization or system seeking Medicaid approval for Peer Support services, the Institute can provide technical assistance services to help you gain that approval.