The Work of Community Engagement Communities in Recovery
The purpose of this preconference is to provide an alternative recovery model to traditional MFT theoretical philosophies on community and recovery oriented approaches. Our goal is to focus on the needs of mental health care by providing a panel from two countries to present our experiences of providing services to all mental health populations. Discussions will focus on parity to non-parity diagnoses, substance abuse, homelessness, education, wrap around services, work options, and enriched community support and involvement.
In our recovery model of community based work, we work within the entire client system. It is a “down/top” type of venue where the client is the expert in their treatment and aides in directing the type of needs for community involvement. In all of our work we embrace the idea that severe mental illness and addictions are often symptoms that make a person be seen as deficit. Often, all that is seen are symptoms and not the person, the context, nor the relationships in—or potential relationships within—the community. We think that most of the “people” we work with have the possibility of recovering their own agency, deciding for themselves the best “solutions of their own situation”, and have the opportunity to empower themselves to design their possibilities to live in a better way.
We hope to offer mental health workers, social workers, clinicians, and university educators to have the opportunity to witness this model where we include all present in the client’s “problem system” to be active participants at all times in the community engagement. Therapist, psychiatrist, social workers, client, and community support are all team players on the client’s team. These ideas are evidenced based and reflect the works of the Houston Galveston Institute, Kanankil Institute, Institute of Now I See a Person, Miller, Duncan & Hubble (1997), Jaakko Seikula in Finland and the Rhizome Way of Christopher Kinman and Lynn Hoffman.
It is our desire to invite each participant at this pre-conference to discuss working within communities and to discuss how successful outcomes can occur. The pre-conference will be held at the Hyatt Regency Sacramento September 30, 2009 from 9 am-3pm. Please contact Dr. Susan Swim: [email protected] for more information and to register.