Resource Available: Enhancing Peer Services in Behavioral Health Services

In 2015, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) led an effort to identify the critical knowledge, skills, and abilities (leading to Core Competencies) needed by anyone who provides peer support services to people with or in recovery from a mental health or substance use condition. This effort resulted in Core Competencies for Peer Workers in Behavioral Health Services, to help communities interested in enhancing peer services in both mental health and substance use services and supports.
As our understanding of peer support grows and the contexts in which peer recovery support services are provided evolve, the Core Competencies must evolve over time. Therefore, updates to these competencies may occur periodically in the future. Core Competencies are intended to apply to all forms of peer support provided to people living with or in recovery from mental health and/or substance use conditions and delivered by or to adults, young adults, family members, and youth. The competencies may also apply to other forms of peer support provided by other roles known as peer specialists, recovery coaches, parent support providers or youth specialists. These are not a complete set of competencies for every context in which peer workers provide services and support. Instead, they can serve as the foundation upon which additional competencies for specific settings that practice peer support and/or for specific groups could be developed in the future.
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Homelessness Update

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New resources clarify definition of chronic homelessness
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has released a flowchart and checklist to help providers understand who meets the definition of chronic homelessness, and how to track this population within programs.
Download the resources »
alliance events
what works to end youth homelessness?
Tuesday, Dec. 6, 2016
2 p.m. - 3 p.m.
Register for next week's webinar and learn more about what the Family Interventions for Youth Experiencing or At Risk of Homelessness tells us about how we can end youth homelessness. Panelists will highlight challenges, promising interventions and policy.
Applications for uk exchange program due dec. 18
The Transatlantic Practice Exchange is an opportunity for five homeless service providers to spend up to two weeks researching responses to homelessness in the UK. The Exchange is a partnership between the Alliance, Homeless Link, and the Oak Foundation.

Read more about why you should apply on our blog.
Apply for the Exchange »
homelessness in the media

Communities respond to release of 2016 Annual Homeless Assessment Report

Read articles from across the nation about the work to end homelessness.

Study: Arkansas Homeless Population Drops In 2016
Report shows homelessness declining in West Virginia
Most of Oregon's homeless families live on the street, in cars, parks
Florida reports largest homeless decrease in one-year period
Homelessness on decline in ND, MN, but F-M shelters remain full
from the blog
Ending Homelessness Today
the official blog of the national alliance to end homelessness
Improving Your Rapid Re-Housing Program to End Homelessness
by Guest blogger, Ben Cattell Noll, Friendship Place
How do we hold ourselves accountable to best practices and improve our rapid re-housing programs without established, evidence-based standards? We use our data! There are a million things we could measure to try and demonstrate our impact, but to truly assess if we are doing what we say we want to do, we simply need to break down WHAT we are trying to do.
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Make a Difference in the Lives of Children on Giving Tuesday
by Michelle Fantone
November 29, Giving Tuesday, is an opportunity for us all to support the causes we believe in by joining a global movement. On this day of giving we reflect back on the previous year, and look forward to how we can collectively stregthen our communities and improve the lives of children and families.
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Application Open for the 2017 Transatlantic Practice Exchange
by Anna Blasco
Homeless service providers in the US can now apply to participate in the 2017 Transatlantic Practice Exchange!
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About Us

The National Alliance to End Homelessness is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization dedicated to solving the problem of homelessness and preventing its continued growth.

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Visit the Center for Capacity Building to learn more about the ways the Center can help your community end homelessness.