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Penn Foundation’s Peer Support Services Team Receives Montgomery County Recovery and Resiliency Award

Penn Foundation Peer Support Team

Penn Foundation’s Peer Support Services Team was the recipient of the 2017 Recovery and Resiliency Award at the 5th Annual Montgomery County Community Support Program (CSP) Conference on June 8th. The team is comprised of Director of Peer Support Services Jane Straw and seven Certified Peer Specialists: Ryan Schweiger (Team Leader), Matt Deery, Karleen Caparro, Walter Wright, AJ Derro, Christopher Meholic, and (not pictured) Michael Puche. Team Leader Ryan Schweiger also received the 2017 CSP Ambassador Award.

“It is an honor to have been selected to receive these awards from Montgomery County,” says Schweiger. “Every member of our team works very hard to live and promote recovery and resiliency principles in his/her personal and professional relationships. We are grateful to be able to go to work every day and be ourselves – individuals in long-term recovery. Working for an innovative organization like Penn Foundation, with supportive colleagues and peers who inspire us every day, makes our jobs even more meaningful.”

“Every member of the Peer Support team actively embraces his/her own recovery and shares it with others, believing that recovery is possible for every person,” says Jane Straw, Director of Peer Support Services. “The team has created an environment that is, at all times, safe, welcoming, and encouraging. The team consistently encourages and empowers individuals to take advantage of opportunities to be part of their communities and to be active participants in their recovery.”

The Recovery and Resiliency Award recognizes individuals, children, families, programs, and organizations that exemplify recovery and/or resiliency principles as outlined by Montgomery County. The awards recognize effort and accomplishment of significant quality that extends beyond the typical expectations of a job description or position.

The CSP Ambassador Award celebrates an individual who embodies the CSP principles of empowerment, cultural competency, natural supports, flexibility, coordination, accountability, sensitivity to special needs, and a strength-based perspective. CSP is a coalition of mental health consumers, family members, and professionals working to help adults with serious mental illnesses and co-occurring disorders live successfully in the community.

Peer Support Services is a unique program partnering certified peer specialists with individuals receiving behavioral health services. Peer specialists are unique in that they draw upon and share their own personal experiences to assist the individual in his/her recovery from mental illness or co-occurring mental illness and substance use issues. Peer specialists model recovery and engage with individuals to assist themin creating their personal recovery plans.