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Friday News and a Special Request from OMH

Friday News and a Special Request from OMH

by Varsha Kamat -
Number of replies: 0

Dear APS Learners,

To view this news update in your browser, click here .

What’s New with the Academy of Peer Services?

A new Continuing Education (CE) course launched this week:
Supporting Older Adults - Part 2: Transitions
You can register for this course like any other course in the Academy.

Join us next week for the next webinar in this series:
Thursday, May 14, 2;00 - 3:30 pm
Supporting Older Adults Part 3: Elders Speak
Presenters: Peter Ashenden, Gayle Bluebird, Angela Cerio, George Ebert
(Guest appearance by Carole Hayes-Collier)
Moderators: Harvey Rosenthal and Pat Feinberg

What’s Next with the APS Virtual Learning Community?

Starting on May 20th

Weekly Wednesday Learning Series 
A collaboration with the New York City Peer and Community Worker Workforce Consortium and the APS Virtual Learning Community

May 20, 12:00 – 1:30 PM Eastern
Peer Workforce Integration Session 1: Getting the Conversation Started 

May 27, 12:00 – 1:30 PM Eastern
Peer Workforce Integration Session 2: Building a Plan 

June 3, 12:00 – 1:30 PM Eastern
Peer Workforce Integration Session 3: Keeping the Action Active

June 10, 12:00 – 1:30 PM Eastern
Peer Workforce Integration Session 4: Evaluating the Implementation

What’s Coming this Week in the Community?

Office of Mental Health

May 11, 8:30 – 12:30 pm ET
Regional Advisory Committee
Public meeting and is designed to solicit input from Consumers/Survivors/Ex-Patients, (c/s/x), and families of people with mental health issues.
(Now Online for All)
Agenda and Connection
(See survey at the end of this news update)
NYC Peer Workforce Coalition

May 11, 6:00 – 8:00 pm ET
Member Meeting
Register for Connection


CNY Peer Networking Group

May 14, 10:00 am – 12:00 noon ET
Register via Email
To receive the Zoom Meeting link

Webinar:  Supporting Older Adults Part 3: Elders Speak

May 14, 2:00 pm – 3:30 pm ET

Peter Ashenden, Gayle Bluebird, Angela Cerio, Carole Haye-Collier, and George Ebert. Moderators: Harvey Rosenthal and Pat Feinberg
Academy of Peer Services Webinar

Peer Workers United

May 14, 6:15- 7:15 pm ET
New York City Support Group for Peer Workers
Organized by the Editor of City Voices
Meeting ID: 965 6302 3983

( See the Open Letter to Essential Workers to Submit their Stories)

For more events and updates, check our:
Online Calendar


Articles and Action Items

 Resilience and Resourcefulness – Key Ingredients in Peer Support, Pandemic or Not! Martha Barbone, National Association of Peer Supporters Interim Director of Operations

“This situation is one that is totally unprecedented in our lifetimes, and one that fosters great anxiety and fear in most of us. Now, we all are attempting to adjust to our new realities...” I read this article and thought, "I have been here before." I reflected back on my life, the times when I had faced a situation totally unprecedented in my life – being raped by someone I trusted as a teenager, being hospitalized, medicated and restrained against my will, being told by a psychiatrist I would never work again, live on my own or raise my children… I have been here before and I think I am doing quite well in spite, or maybe because of that.

Many years ago, when I was relating how hopeless I felt, a wise friend asked me, “Have you felt like this before? And, “What did you do to feel better? Because you are still here.” As I have moved along this journey called life, these feelings have come up many times and I’ve had many different responses. Some have not been very helpful. Some have been very helpful in the moment, but not in the long term. And some have gotten me to where I am today, feeling better prepared than many to deal with fear and uncertainty. This is due to resilience and resourcefulness. (Continue to read.)


 May is Mental Health Month

by Howard Diamond

MAY DAY! MAY DAY! Of course, I am not abandoning ship. What I am about to say, May is Mental Health Month. Now it is our time to be together, apart. Just as The Turtles sang, “Happy Together “. Although, this concept is quite difficult, we must do this for both our Mental Health and our Physical Health. (Continue to read.)


COVID-19 and the Dimensions of Wellness
 - A Short Survey (
Peggy Swarbrick)

We would like to know how you are doing in these difficult times. For example, what has happened to your life and what kinds of help do you need?  How have you helped others and how have they helped you?

Thank you for answering these questions to help us understand your life right now! Take the survey at:


 Open Letter from City Voices Editor Dan Frey:

First and foremost, if you are reading this, we want you to know that your efforts have not been in vain. In our efforts to honor your work, we at City Voices would like to invite you to share your story:


Office of Mental Health

Calling all peers and supervisors - Special request to help with a survey of people receiving services

The Office of Mental Health is conducting a survey to help us better understand the impact of COVID-19 in our community.  The results from this survey will be included in a briefing document for executive leadership at the Office of Mental Health.  Your input is critical to help us understand the needs of the community and help us prioritize policy and program decisions.  The survey is anonymous. We are looking for responses from people who receive services from OMH programs and their family members.  We recognize that some people may have trouble accessing the survey, so we’re asking service providers (including peer support specialists) and advocates to reach out to individuals and families and complete the survey on their behalf.

People (including peer specialists helping others) can call the Office of Consumer Affairs to participate in the survey over the phone. Our number is 518.473.6579.

If language or translation services are needed, contact Matt Canuteson, Diversity & Inclusion Officer,

 Link to the survey:


Virtual Community Site

Be sure to check our resourceful Virtual Community website. 
It is a clearinghouse of information by and for the peer support workforce. And it is updated daily. There are job openings, access to online support groups and much more.

Are we missing anything? Send us email 

 This is an informational message from the Academy of Peer Services Virtual Learning Community, to provide news and new opportunities for the APS learning community.

To receive regular updates directly from the Virtual Learning Community, click here.