Next Training


The Augusta training will mark our 43rd training to date.  The training will be held June 16-26 in Augusta, GA.  Applications will be available for download on April 21, 2014 with a deadline for submission of May 19, 2014.

There are approximately 930 Certified Peer Specialists (CPSs) from Georgia, including those who have joined us for training from 12 other states and 4 Canadian Provinces. CPSs work in a variety of settings both within and outside of the behavioral health system and are leaders in some of GA’s newest initiatives: The Medical College of Georgia has hired CPSs to bring strengths based recovery and the concept of peer support to student physicians, psychologists and psychiatrists. CPSs statewide are supporting peers who are currently transitioning from long-term hospitalization into the community under Olmstead.  A CPS in partnership with clinical providers, in a traditional system, created The Peer Support Specialist Program of the Veteran’s Administration in Augusta, it has now expanded nationwide. The presence of CPSs in the lives of Georgia’s peers is a powerful statement of belief in the reality of recovery and the power of peer support to aid in recovery.
Georgia shines because of its consumer leadership. Carol Coussons de Reyes was the first CPS to serve as Director of the Consumer Relations and Recovery Section of the Department of Human Resources. Currently, Mark Baker, CPS, is the Director of the Office of Recovery Transformation at DBHDD.  GMHCN continues under the leadership of, Executive Director and CPS, Sherry Jenkins Tucker. The partnership forged by these organizations has underscored Georgia’s determination to be a leader in behavioral health system transformation.

The National Institute of Medicine promotes the GA CPS Project as a model for other states to emulate. The Annapolis Coalition on Behavioral Health Workforce identified the Project as an “innovative and exceptional practice”. The Center for Mental Health Services (CMHS), part of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), released a Resource Kit, BUILDING A FOUNDATION FOR RECOVERY:  HOW STATES CAN BILL MEDICAID FOR PEER SUPPORT SERVICES AND TRAIN A WORKFORCE OF PEERS. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) endorsed peer support services, a milestone accomplishment that allows other states to tap into a steady funding mechanism for peer support services.

Training graduates are eligible to sit for the certification exam, given in Decatur, approximately one month after their training.  CPSs are expected to attend continuing education, held throughout the year.  Georgia’s CPSs are prepared to meet Medicaid requirements for reimbursement in Peer Supports, ACT, and CPSs also work in PSR, and wherever the power of peer role models can and should be felt.

Presenters:  Presenters from Appalachian Consulting Group, and GMHCN, will conduct the training with guest presenters from APS Healthcare, Georgia Advocacy Office and other community partners.

Audience:  This training is for current or former consumers of Behavioral Health services in Georgia, who have an interest in providing peer support services for people who have been given behavioral health diagnoses. (Training class size is limited to 40 - 45 persons.)


Applications For The Augusta Training Will Be Available April 21



Download the 2014 CPS Project Schedule




QUALIFICATIONS FOR ACCEPTANCE:

Candidates must have a primary diagnosis of mental illness or a dual diagnosis of mental illness and addictive disease, and a strong desire to identify themselves as a person with mental illness (current or former consumer of mental health services). Applicants must hold a GED or High School diploma. You may be requested to provide a copy of this document. In addition, applicants must demonstrate strong reading comprehension and written communication skills as indicated by their responses on the pre-test. (Please do not type any portion of the application and pre-test, and do not have anyone fill out either of these forms for you.) You must have demonstrated experience with leadership, advocacy, or governance, and be well grounded in your recovery (one year between diagnosis and application to the training). Please feel free to contact the Project if you have any questions about your qualifications

Peers who are interested in becoming a Certified Peer Specialist apply through the Georgia Certified Peer Specialist Project manager. Candidates are selected for the training based on their employment status and the ability to meet the training guidelines. Consumers who are currently employed by a public or private provider of Medicaid billable services are considered for acceptance first. A peer who has distinguished them self as a peer leader and is being sponsored by a Medicaid provider for possible hire is given next priority. Consumers who work within a peer service that does not bill Medicaid or a consumer that is seeking certification to improve their marketability are given next priority. This system was devised to assist program providers in meeting the guidelines that have been set by Medicaid





TRAINING HISTORY

43. April 2014 in Augusta, GA
42. March 2014 in Macon, GA
41. December 2013 in Decatur, GA
40. September 2013 in Macon, GA
39. July 2013 in Tifton, GA
38. June 2013 in Decatur, GA
37. February-March 2013 in St. Simons Island, GA
36. November 2012 in Norcross, GA
35. September 2012 in Macon, GA
34. May 2012 in Norcross, GA
33. February-March 2012 in Norcross, GA
32. October 2011 in St Simons Island, GA
31. August 2011 in Norcross, GA
30. March 2011 in Norcross, GA
29. October-November 2010 in St Simons Island, GA
28. August 2010 in Norcross, GA
27. February 2010 in Norcross, GA
26. October 2009 in St Simons Island, GA
25. July 2009 in Norcross, GA
24. February 2009 in Norcross, GA
23. September 2008 in St. Simons Island, GA
22. July 2008 in Norcross, GA
21. March 2008 in St. Simons Island, GA
20. October-November 2007 in in Norcross, GA
19. August 2007 in St. Simons Island, GA
18. March 2007 in Norcross, GA
17. November-December 2006 in St. Simons Island, GA
16. September 2006 in Norcross, GA
15. March 2006 in St. Simons Island, GA
14. December 2005 in Helen, GA
13. June 2005 in St. Simons Island, GA
12. March 2005 in St. Simons Island, GA
11. December 2004 in St. Simons Island, GA
10. July 2004 in Dahlonega, GA
  9. April 2004 in Dahlonega, GA
  8. December 2003 in St. Simons Island, GA
  7. August 2003 in Dahlonega, GA
  6. April 2003 in Milledgeville, GA.
  5. November 2002 - St. Simons Island, GA.
  4. October 2002 - North GA Mountains
  3. April 2002 – Atlanta, GA
  2. February 2002 – Macon, GA
  1. October. 2001 – Pilot training held at Epworth by the Sea, St. Simons Island, GA





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