Community Advocates Self-Advocacy Training was developed in 2005 with the assistance of former Consultant Maureen Feeny-Byrnes. Resources used to develop the training included the Freedom Self-Advocacy curriculum, a train-the-trainer curriculum developed by:
- the National Mental Health Consumers’ Self-Help Clearinghouse,
- the National Mental Health Association (NMHA), and
- the National Association of Protection and Advocacy Systems (NAPAS).
Community Advocates worked with individuals, family members, professionals and advocates to modify and adapt existing curricula to meet the needs of Montgomery County residents. In addition, NAMI’s Peer-to-Peer Training and provider training was used as a resource. Team members from the Consumer Satisfaction Team of Montgomery County assisted in developing a role-play which focuses on dignity and respect and demonstrates self-advocacy skills.
By learning effective advocacy skills, individuals take control of his or her personal recovery and are empowered to assert his or her rights.
Over 1,000 individuals, including family members and professional staff, have participated in the Self-Advocacy Trainings throughout Montgomery County.