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NEC and the California Network of Mental Health Clients Train Emerging California c/s/x Leaders in Recovery and Self-help

California Dream Team from NEC training June 9,10, 2005

Seated folks: (From left to right) Dorothy Frieberg, Lisa Partaker, Mary Watson, Carla McSweeney, Fred Lee, "Easy" Campos. Middle row: Ruth Gravitt, Delphine Brody, Tracy Love, Patty Gainer, Katherine Wade, Alana Bellastrazze, Sally Zinman, Dan Fisher. Back row: Carole Ford, Kevin Murphy, Daniel Rosas, Dewey Dempsey, Bev & David Lynott, Nancy Thomas, Cindy Ward, Tom Harte

NEC and the California Network of Mental Health Clients Train Emerging California c/s/x Leaders in Recovery and Self-help On June 9th and 10th, 2005

Daniel Fisher conducted a two-day training for 19 emerging leaders from California. The training was organized by Carol Ford, director of the office of Self-help for the California Network of Mental Health Clients. The Meeting was led off by Sally Zinman who described the need to pass the baton of leadership on to a new generation of leaders. The training covered the evidence that people recover from mental illness, the principles of recovery from NEC’s research, and the Empowerment Model of Recovery. Peer support techniques, opportunities, and challenges were presented. The presentation also included ways that these leaders could participate in the transformation of the mental health system to a recovery-based, consumer-driven system as recommended in the New Freedom Commission Report of 2003.

At the end of the training, Dan gave pointers on how to do public speaking and a number of the participants gave excellent 5-minute presentations in front of the group. Each of the presenters described how they would carry the information they had learned back to their region to train local consumers and staff. Several of the participants said that the training had given them increased motivation to advocate and train in their area. One participant said that for the first time he felt that he could recover and in fact felt he was mostly there. He said that now instead of seeing his illness as a stumbling block he sees it as a stepping-stone. Another participant said the “training elevated me to an increased level of motivation to be a positive force for change in my community.” Another participant said she plans to set up a recovery training program for the staff in her facility.