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Peer Specialist Certification Program

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2023 Peer Specialist Certification Training Program & Waiver Testing

District of Columbia Department of Behavioral Health is accepting applications for the 2023 Peer Specialist Certification Training Program and Waiver Testing. There are three sessions scheduled for training classes and three for Waiver testing. Application deadlines, dates of training, waiver testing and general instruction regarding practicum assignments for all sessions are provided in the class schedule section (see below). Peer specialists are self-identified people who are successful in the recovery process and who help others who are living with mental and/or substance use disorders. Through mutual respect and shared understanding based on similar experiences, peer specialists help people get into treatment and meet the challenges to sustain recovery. The Peer Specialist Certification Training Program builds on the experience of people in recovery with training in foundational competencies required by anyone who provides peer support in behavioral health services. The Peer Specialist certification training program will reinforce your knowledge based on personal experience, bring a unique prospective to person centered care, and enrich our recovery support services. The Peer Specialist Certification Training Program helps prepare individuals to qualify for available certified peer specialist jobs within the community behavioral health provider network. Under general supervision, a certified peer specialist performs a wide range of tasks to help individuals regain control over their lives and their own recovery process. DBH encourages certified providers to include certified peer specialists in their workforce. A certified Peer Specialist offers critical support in a variety of ways including:

  • Acting as a mentor and being present for those engaged in the recovery process
  • Helping people advocate for and access resources they need to support their recovery
  • Participating in the treatment team under supervision of a trained behavioral health specialist
  • Leading recovery groups • Conducting surveys to gauge satisfaction with services
  • Bringing their personal experiences to decisions about program and policy development
  • Participating in community engagement activities to promote treatment and support services

After successful completion of classroom training, an 80-hour field practicum must be completed with a behavioral health provider certified by the Department of Behavioral Health. Participants who successfully complete program requirements will receive two-year Peer Specialist Certification.

Who is eligible for the program? The Peer Specialist Certification Training Program is for selfidentified current or former consumers of behavioral health services who have the ability to support other individuals diagnosed with a mental illness and/or substance use disorder. To be eligible for consideration, an applicant must be a District resident and at least 18 years of age with a high school diploma, GED, or higher, and in recovery from a mental illness and/or substance use disorder for two years or longer. To be consider for a waiver, applicant must be at least 18 years of age with a high school diploma, GED, or higher, and in recovery from a mental illness and/or substance use disorder for two years or longer, currently or formerly employed (including volunteer experience) in a peer capacity within a DC behavioral health system or its contractors for a minimum of five (5) years or have current certification from another state or jurisdiction (in good standing).

How do I apply for the program? A completed application along with a resume, proof of residency, evidence of education, and two letters of reference (no older than one year) must be emailed to [email protected], mailed, or hand-delivered to the Department of Behavioral Health Consumer and Family Affairs, 64 New York Avenue, NE, 3rd Floor, Washington, DC 20002 (Attn: CFA or handdelivered to a CFA staff member). Only complete applications will be considered.

 

2023 Peer Specialist Certification Training Program Schedule & Waiver Testing

Location

Application Deadline

In person Classes

Interview Dates

Orientation

64 New York Ave NE

Wash, DC 20002

February 3,  2023 at 12pm

 

February 13, – March 21, 2023

Monday – Friday

9:00 am – 12:30 pm

Scheduled upon selection

To be determined

64 New York Ave NE

Wash, DC 20002

March 3,  2023 at 12pm

March 27 – April 27, 2023

Monday – Friday

9:00 am – 12:30 pm

Scheduled upon selection To be determined

64 New York Ave NE

Wash, DC 20002

May 12,  2023 at 12pm

June 5 – June 10, 2023

Monday – Friday

9:00 am – 12:30 pm

Scheduled upon selection To be determined
Location

Waiver Application Deadline

Waiver Interview Dates Waiver Test Dates  

64 New York Ave NE

Wash, DC 20002

February 3,  2023 at 12pm To be determined To be determined  

64 New York Ave NE

Wash, DC 20002

March 3,  2023 at 12pm To be determined To be determined  

64 New York Ave NE

Wash, DC 20002

May 12,  2023 at 12pm To be determined To be determined  

Practicum Assignments

Practicum assignments are coordinated by CPS Program Coordinator. Schedules for practicums are customized by the trainee and host provider. Practicum dates generally do not exceed 4 weeks post class completion. The DBH Training Team provides support to the trainee throughout this process.

Service Details: 
Service Contact: 
Trina Logan, Director
Contact Email: 
Contact Phone: 
(202) 673-4377
Contact TTY: 
711