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As I reflect back on the year 2015, I realize how much I have learned from people all over the world.  I realize that every event, conference and training involved stories from wonderful people who spoke of their life experiences.  Through stories, we laughed, cried and deepened our understanding because someone chose to share.

Holding Hope
      by Melissa Lemmer, Advanced Level WRAP Facilitator
       WRAP has completely changed my life and continues to do so each day.  WRAP was like a foreign language to me when I was introduced to it in 2003. I was encouraged to continue to develop my plan and one of the facilitators said, “I will hold hope for you until you have it for yourself.”   I sat through at least six WRAP workshops before it actually sunk in that it was a plan that I create for myself and that I could get well and stay well for long periods of time.
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Jim Janusz

by Jim Janusz

I would like to share my own journey through recovery with you.  It is spring 1993.  Picture me, a bright young man, trying to get through college with a promising future ahead, and a lot more hair.  I had entered college on a full Army ROTC scholarship based on previous high academic achievements.  Like many college students, I was trying to balance my studies with an active party life on the weekends.  

I couldn’t do it.  My ambition was soon overshadowed by a stressful and overwhelming schedule, and I soon found myself in the darkness of a nervous breakdown.  At the age of 19, my world seemed to turn upside down almost overnight.  It was my first hospitalization, and I had to withdraw from all my classes.  I never returned to college in the fall.  I felt entirely disconnected from my friends, as the shame seemed almost unbearable.

National Recovery Month

National Recovery Month (Recovery Month) is a national observance held every September to educate Americans that substance use treatment and mental health services can enable those with a mental and/or substance use disorder to live a healthy and rewarding life. Recovery Month celebrates the gains made by those in recovery, just as we celebrate health improvements made by those who are managing other health conditions such as hypertension, diabetes, asthma, and heart disease. The observance reinforces the positive message that behavioral health is essential to overall health, prevention works, treatment is effective, and people can and do recover.

Peter Welch and Copeland Center

Brattleboro, VT September 3, 2015 Congressman Peter Welch today announced the award of a federal grant from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) to The Copeland Center for Wellness and Recovery, for its new program, Doors to Wellbeing, a program on creating accessibility to mental health and wellness services in the US.

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Survivor, Thought Leader Wins National Voice Award for Work in Trauma-Informed Care

WASHINGTON – By the time Cheryl Sharp reached the age of 24, she had survived nine suicide attempts, lost her mother to a mental illness and battled addictions. Today, she is a pioneer in the field of trauma-informed care and a recently announced winner of a 2015 Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration Consumer/Peer Leadership Voice Award.

Peer Support

TRUFANT, Mich.—The important roles and value of people helping others in the mental health and addictions fields will be the focus of a Global Peer Supporter Celebration Day.

“Peer supporters are individuals who are well along in their recovery journeys from mental health and/or addiction challenges who help others on their journeys,” according to Steve Harrington, Executive Director of the International Association of Peer Supporters (iNAPS). “This is a relatively new profession that has quickly proven to be cost effective in the treatment of these disorders.”

Komala Pepin
A warm welcome to our newest member of the board of director, Komala Pepin. Komala was born in Durban, South Africa and at age 10 moved to Alberta, Canada. During her first mental health placement as a student Occupational Therapist she found her lifelong passion.  Komala’s dynamic 35 year career included a leadership role as an Addiction and Mental Health Program manager with Alberta Health Services, Edmonton. She was instrumental in leading transformative system change in the area of peer support and recovery focused care.