Peerlink National Technical Assistance Center, a project of Mental Health America of Oregon, announces ALTERNATIVES 2012, the national mental health conference organized by and for mental health consumers/survivors.
“Honoring Our History, Building Our Future”
ALTERNATIVES 2012 CALL FOR PRESENTATIONS
Portland Marriott Downtown Waterfront
October 10-14, 2012
The theme of Alternatives 2012 is “Honoring Our History, Building Our Future.”
The theme reflects the importance of honoring the efforts and achievements of our community. Our history of creating change for people with psychiatric histories is the foundation on which we build a better future for ourselves and our community. The conference will serve as a catalyst for building a better future by providing opportunities for sharing knowledge about innovative peer-delivered services, tools for mental health recovery,
and systems change.
Peerlink is proud to host this year’s Alternatives Conference in our home city of Portland, Oregon. Oregon, known for its innovative and progressive political and social climate, is a fitting location for a conference focused on building a better future. Known for its friendly people, great food, and breathtaking scenery, we are excited to welcome participants to our “green” city.
Each Alternatives conference offers in-depth technical assistance on consumer/survivor-delivered services and self-help/recovery methods. The Alternatives 2012 Advisory Committee, which includes consumer/survivor leaders from across the nation, is seeking proposals for presentations on the topic areas listed inside, although proposals need not be limited to these subjects. We invite everyone to apply; first-time presenters are especially
welcome. Learning from each other exemplifies self-help, mutual support, and the principles of recovery in action!
Presentations emphasizing the participation of attendees and the ability to replicate ideas will be given priority.
Reviewers will evaluate proposals according to the following:
- Relevance to the conference theme and suggested subject areas
- Expertise and experience of presenter(s)
- Opportunities for participants to develop new skills and/or replicate a successful program
- Indication that the lead presenter is a consumer/survivor
- Clear outline and learning objectives of the presentation
- Opportunities for actively engaging attendees in the presentation
HEALTHCARE REFORM AND SYSTEMS TRANSFORMATION – The impending changes to the healthcare system in the United States will dramatically affect how mental health services are funded and received. People with psychiatric diagnoses must be educated about and involved in these changes to ensure a future where services facilitate recovery and are provided by peers. Building a better future for our community requires our involvement in the redesign of the healthcare system and other systems in which individuals who have psychiatric histories may find themselves. Possible topics include: health care transformation and reform, influencing policy and planning, legislative topics
such as the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the Fair Housing Act, rights protection, seclusion and restraint, involuntary treatment, working with the Protection and Advocacy (P&A) system, peer-run advocacy programs, grassroots organizing, state offices of consumer affairs, cross-disability advocacy, harnessing technology for social change, and rural/urban issues.
ECONOMIC WELLNESS – Changing our financial situation is often a fundamental piece of building a better future. Disproportionately high numbers of people with mental health diagnoses live in poverty; studies show rates of unemployment from 60-80%. Yet, economic wellness and financial well-being are integral and essential to recovery and wellness. How can we enable people with mental health diagnoses to move out of poverty? How do we create financial self-sufficiency, increase rates of employment, and decrease poverty and its impact in our community? Possible topics include: financial education, poverty reduction and alleviation programs, peer-provided employment services, supported
employment, work incentives and benefits planning, career paths, entrepreneurship, job coaching, supported education, micro-lending and small business resources.
CELBRATING CULTURAL COMMUNITIES – We are all connected to a community and being able to unite in our similarities yet celebrate our unique cultural differences is important. Possible topics include: stigma and discrimination, cultural competence, linguistic competence, trauma-informed programs and services, and outreach and engagement strategies to groups who are underrepresented in the consumer/survivor movement including youth, ethnic/racial minorities, veterans, individuals with criminal justice histories, individuals who are homeless or inadequately housed, the LGBTIQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex, questioning) communities, and/or immigrants.
ORGANIZATIONAL CAPACITY-BUILDING – Building strong and well-functioning peer-run and peer-led organizations is a key component in building a better future for our community. This conference offers an opportunity to receive training and technical assistance on how to create and strengthen organizations that facilitate recovery and improve our lives. Possible topics include: leadership development, harnessing technology for organizational change, evidence-based practices, model consumer-run programs, program sustainability, program evaluation, financing mechanisms for peer-run programs, consumer-provider partnerships, and media outreach.
HOLISTIC APPROACHES TO WELLNESS – Wellness is more than the absence of disease; it is a multi-dimensional and holistic approach to living. When one of us is asked, ‘How did you recover? How do you stay well?’ the answers are as varied as our community is. Workshops might include presentations on innovative wellness programs and/or experiential workshops that introduce participants to wellness
and healing approaches. Possible topics include: the arts as vehicles for wellness and healing (e.g. dance, visual arts, music), wellness coaching, culturally competent approaches to wellness, connecting with nature, shared decision-making, physical wellness and movement, alternative and
complementary approaches (e.g. acupuncture, nutrition, herbs, Reiki), comedy and humor, animals, spiritual healing and spiritual practices (e.g. meditation, tai chi, visualization, yoga, shamanism), and prevention strategies.
INNOVATIVE SUPPORTS AND SERVICES – For many individuals with mental health diagnoses, access to innovative and specialized supports and services is a critical part of creating a better future. This conference provides an opportunity to explore tailored supports that address the varied needs of our community. Possible topics include: the unique needs of returning veterans and their families, implementing the Olmstead Decision, model housing programs, medication empowerment and optimization programs, peer-run crisis services, suicide prevention, faith-based communities, online and social networking programs, parenting, integrative health approaches, model community
partnerships, innovative approaches to address domestic violence, and substance abuse.
TOPICAL AREAS for WORKSHOPS & INSTITUTES
Proposals must be received by:
May 7, 2012
MAIL: ALTERNATIVES 2012 Presentation Proposal
c/o Horizon Meetings
P.O. Box 500209
Austin, TX 78750
PHONE: (888) 776-1286 ext. 101
APPLY BY E-MAIL OR ONLINE