Yes, Advocacy Unlimited's Recovery Support Specialist RSS Training and Certification is the only state authorized training program.
RSS application does ask if individual has direct, lived experience of addiction or receiving addiction services.
RSS Application asks if individual as High School Diploma or GED equivalent but doesn’t state if it is a requirement
Must have direct, lived experience of receiving mental health services and/or mental health hospitalization over the course of your life and the experiences have seriously impacted your life and relationship for an extended time.
(Peer is defined as ""an individual who has experienced a significant behavioral health condition as defined by the DSMIV-R to the extent it interfered with one or more major life functions and required treatment for at least one year"")
Must be willing to use your lived experience as part of your role as a Recovery Support Specialist
One letter of reference is needed with application.
The course is an 80-hour advanced training and certification course. It is typically offered two times per week, 6 hours each day with computer based and between class assignments.
- Module 1 - Foundations for RSS (State of Affairs and Recovery Movement History)
-Module 2 - The RSS Role (Honoring RSS Core Values and Sharing Your Recovery History)
-Module 3 - Effective and Empathic Communication (Empathy & Hope and Active Listening)
- Module 4 - Partnering and Mutuality (Personal Agency, Mutuality & Working with Others and Partnering, Boundaries, & Ethical Considerations)
Module 5 - Day to Day (Intentional Peer Support and Wellness Recovery Action Planning);
Module 6 - Advocacy (Advocacy & Working with Families & Groups);
Module 7 - Community & Natural Resources (Community Resources Day and Legislation & Legal Issues);
Module 8 - Comprehension (Peer Modalities, Group Facilitation Practice and Taking care of yourself, Group Facilitation Practice);
Module 9 - Final Review & Course Eval.
50 hours of training are specific to the domains, with at least 10 hours in the domains of Advocacy, Mentoring/Client Education and Recovery/Wellness Support and at least 16 hours in the domain of Ethical Responsibility and 4 hours of electives
Must agree to abide by and sign the Peer Recovery Code of Ethics statement.
The CPRS code of ethics serves to: 1) Protect consumers of recovery support services; 2) Set a professional standard; 3) Increase confidence in the profession; 4) Identify core values which underlie the work performed; 5) Create accountability among CPRS professionals; 6) Establish occupational identity and maturity
It includes 25 hours of supervision specific to the domains of Advocacy, Mentoring/education, Recovery/Wellness Support, Ethical Responsibilities provided by an organization's documented and qualified supervisor per job description and 500 hours of volunteer and/or paid work experience specific to the domains
There are not required background checks but employment agencies hiring may require and conduct background checks based on their established criteria.
Re-testing only required if you let your certification expire.
Yes, Advocacy Unlimited Inc.
Advocacy Unlimited, Inc. is a peer run non-profit organization based in Connecticut. Over the past 20 years, we have remained innovative as we’ve grown from a small mental health rights initiative into a nationally-recognized non-profit organization that provides education, advocacy and support through non-clinical and holistic engagement.
Advocacy Unlimited Inc. firstname.lastname@example.org Main office: 114 West Main Street, New Britain, CT 06051 Local: (860)505-7581
Toll free in CT: 1-800-573-6929
Hartford Office: 399 Franklin Ave., Hartford, CT 06114 Local: (860)296-2338
Emailing Latosha (Ltaylor@advocacyunlimited.org)
Recovery University through Advocacy Unlimited Inc. email@example.com
Main office: 114 West Main Street, New Britain, CT 06051
Toll free in CT: 1-800-573-6929
Hartford Office: 399 Franklin Ave., Hartford, CT 06114
Annual Renewal Requirements: 10 hours of continuing education specific to peer recovery, including 3 hours of ethics, is required for each year the Certified Peer Recovery Specialist wishes to renew
RSS: Recovery Support Specialist CPRS: Certified Peer Recovery Specialist
Yes, Connecticut Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services supports Advocacy Unlimited Inc. in training and certifying Recovery Support Specialists in Peer Delivered Services under the new Medicaid Waiver program
The Mental Health Waiver Program, authorized in §1915(c) of the Social Security Act, allows the State to furnish an array of home and community-based services that assist Medicaid beneficiaries to live in the community and avoid institutional care. Waiver services complement and/or supplement services available to participants through the Medicaid State plan and other federal, state and local public programs as well as natural supports that families and communities provide. Peer services are also funded through grants administered by DMHAS (Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services).
Questions about certification process: Jeff at firstname.lastname@example.org
Peer Forum at Advocacy Unlimited and the Karuna Conference