Peer Support at CMHC

What is Peer Support?

Through Peer Support, people with their own experience of mental illness and/or addictions provide support, hope, and education to others who are receiving services. At CT Mental Health Center, Peer Support Staff are trained and paid to help support clients in their recovery journeys.

Peer support is offered in the following places and programs at CMHC:

The Peer Support Team Resource Desk

Peers at the Resource Desks provide individual support. They are available to talk with clients, connect them with resources, explain the ins-and-outs of services or simply help people find their way in the building. Peers act as role models and share their experiences with mental illness and/or addictions with others. Every year, they help to administer the Consumer Satisfaction Survey of the CT Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services. Peers are also available to help people receiving services fill out intake paperwork or write a note to the Director about services at CMHC.

LocationDays and Times
1st Floor Main Lobby1st Floor – M-Th, 8:30-3pm
2nd Floor Elevator Lobby2nd Floor – M-Th, 10-2

Contact: Rebecca Miller, PhD, (203) 889-7097, rebecca.miller@yale.edu

Recovery Coaches

Recovery Coaches are peer support staff working on treatment teams within the CMHC system. Recovery Coaches bring specialized peer support skills and training into multidisciplinary clinical teams. Recovery Coaches provide a variety of different supports, from individual coaching to running groups, supporting people in developing recovery plans, providing education about resources, and engaging people in their treatment and in their communities.

Location: Currently, CMHC has Recovery Coaches on the ACT (Assertive Community Treatment) Team based at 34 Park Street, and on the Young Adult Services Team at the West Haven Mental Health Clinic.

Contact: Rebecca Miller, PhD, (203) 889-7097, rebecca.miller@yale.edu

Peer-Led WRAP Groups

Wellness Recovery Action Planning (WRAP) is a curriculum developed by Mary Ellen Copeland, MSW, who herself is in recovery from bipolar disorder. Peer-facilitated WRAP groups help participants develop daily wellness plans, create a wellness toolbox, and construct a crisis and post-crisis plan to help when things aren’t going well. WRAP groups are offered on the 4th floor Inpatient Unit and for people receiving outpatient services at CMHC.

Location: 4th Floor Inpatient (open to patients on the 4th floor) and Outpatient groups at 34 Park Street (open to any outpatient client at CMHC)

Days and Times: 4th Floor Inpatient: Mondays at 10am; Outpatient, Mondays at 11am

Contact: Ted Pappas, (203) 974-7265, ted.pappas@yale.edu

Recovery Library and Rolling Book Cart

Peers are currently building a library of books available to staff and clients in the Lobby area. The library includes a rolling cart with books of all kinds (on hobbies, self-help, recovery stories, and more) for the 4th floor Inpatient Unit. Peer Support Staff provide support to patients on the 4th floor, acting as role models and inspiring hope.

Location: Front Lobby, M-Th, 8:30-3pm; 4th Floor Inpatient Unit, days and times to be announced

Contact: Rebecca Miller, PhD, (203) 889-7097, rebecca.miller@yale.edu

CMHC/CSN Peer Forum

This monthly forum is open to anyone currently employed in Peer Support work at CMHC and across the Community Services Network. The group meets once a month to discuss issues, concerns and rewards of peer work, to network among colleagues, and to offer feedback to the Directors of the CSN agencies and the CMHC program director.

Location: To be announced; meetings have been at CMHC but also rotate to different agencies

Days and Times: Monthly; days and times vary

Contact: Ted Pappas, (203) 974-7265, ted.pappas@yale.edu

To learn more about peer support services at CMHC, please contact Rebecca Miller, Director of Peer Support at CMHC, (203) 889-7097, rebecca.miller@yale.edu.