Recovery Stories – Episode 2: The Road to Recovery

The CAFE TA Center is pleased to announce the release of the second video in its ongoing series, Recovery Stories. This series of videos, all of which were assembled from interviews of people with lived experience of mental health challenges at the 2013 Alternatives conference, provides a platform for people to share their individual experience of mental health recovery.

This installment, The Road to Recovery, features individuals sharing their stories of how they first learned encountered the issue of mental health, and the fears, hopes and assumptions that they brought to their recovery journey at its outset.

Every video in the series can be found in the Recovery Stories section of

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Recovery Stories – Episode 1: What Does Recovery Mean for You?

At the 2013 Alternatives conference in Austin, TX, The CAFE TA Center invited people with lived experience to share their thoughts on recovery. Dozens of people chose to participate, and offered their reflections on the recovery process, how the concept of recovery has changed their perspective on mental health, and what public policy makers and the general public need to understand about the concept of recovery.

The CAFE TAC has collected those conversations, and created a series of videos that tell the Recovery Stories of real people engaged in the process. They will be posted in bi-weekly installments throughout April and May of 2014.

This video is the first installment, which examines the question, “What does recovery mean for you?” Please enjoy these inspiring stories of people with lived experience that show how essential, meaningful and empowering the idea of recovery can be.


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Managing Peer Support Employees Experiencing Mental Health Crisis

For any organization, recruiting, managing and retaining qualified professional staff is an essential part of doing business. For consumer mental health organizations, taking care of their employees while providing quality services to the community is an even more complex challenge. Not only must organizations ensure that the supports and services their employees provide are of the highest quality, but they also need to accommodate the the wellness of the peer support workers they employ.

In the latest Focus, CAFE TAC offers some advice on how consumer organizations can support the wellness of the peers they support, particularly in times of behavioral health crisis. It includes twelve steps organizations can take to prepare to accommodate the needs of employees with lived experience, support them through crisis and build upon their resiliency and strengths. Check it out here.

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Focus: Thirty Schools Recognized for Quality Mental Health Programming

It’s no secret that student mental health and suicide prevention have become major issues on college campuses across the country. While some institutions have made meaningful efforts to encourage dialogue, counter stigma, and make mental health services readily accessible, concerns about liability, an inability to adequately serve students and other factors have made higher education inhospitable for some students with mental health needs.

In a new Focus newsletter, CAFE TAC explores a new non-profit project that is working to help colleges and universities identify the shortcomings in their approach to mental health, while also offering a seal of approval to those institutions with exceptional mental health, suicide prevention and substance abuse programming. This organization recently revealed the first thirty schools to receive its seal. To find out who those school are, and how the evaluation process works, check out the new Focus newsletter today!

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A Focus on The Mental Health Workforce Crisis

As last year’s SAMHSA report to Congress on the nation’s substance abuse and mental health workforce noted, the demand for behavioral health services in the US exceeds what is available. With expanded access to care through the Affordable Care Act and new Mental Health Parity rules, that demand will only increase in coming years, and a larger workforce will be needed to provide care. What are the impediments to growing the behavioral health workforce? What are the challenges? And how can people with lived experience and consumer organizations help the nation to meet those challenges? CAFE TAC’s newest newsletter, Focus30: The Mental Health Workforce Crisis,  reviews findings about issues within the nation’s mental health workforce. It also shares some of the solutions that are being attempted across the country, and the challenges ahead that people with lived experience and consumer organizations may be able to help the system meet. Check it out here!

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