Part of what makes implementing 'peer' roles so very challenging is that they aren't very well understood by the providers who are trying to implement them, or even by the people who are applying to work in those newly created roles. All too often, positions that are getting called 'peer' end up being the same old positions with a new title, or marginalized in some way.
We are pleased to announce that through a grant from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration's (SAMHSA) Bringing Recovery Supports to Scale Technical Assistance Center Strategy (BRSS TACS) project, the Western Massachusetts Recovery Learning Community in partnership with Legere Consulting and the Western Massachusetts Peer Network, has created a handbook to support address this issue.
The handbook has two different sections. One section is written particularly for providers who have or are in the process of implementing peer roles ("The Provider's Handbook on Developing & Implementing Peer Roles), while the other is intended for individuals working in those roles ("A Handbook for Individuals Working in Peer Roles."). In print form, the handbook is set up so that if you start from one side, you are reading the provider version, but if you flip the book over and read from the other side, you are reading the version intended for those working in peer roles. Although the book is likely to continue to develop and see updated editions in the future, the current edition is available below: