“It’s T.I.M.E.”  – A justice and recovery class created to help individuals Think, Identify risks and triggers, Make changes and Enter a new life.

It’s T.I.M.E. is a peer-facilitated class which provides education to help people who have mental health and justice related issues learn to develop good decision making skills to avoid reoffending and incarceration.

Topics discussed in the 13-week one hour class:

Week 1: Orientation.

Week 2:  Understanding the criminal justice system.

Week 3:  Motivation.

Week 4:  Risk Factors. Research shows there are typical risk factors that are shared by people who commit crimes. We will discuss these risk factors.

Week 5:  Signs and Symptoms of Mental Illness.

Week 6:  Identifying Triggers. What are triggers? How do they affect my behavior?

Week 7:  Distorted Thinking I—Descriptions of distorted thinking are presented and we learn to identify our thoughts about ourselves, the thoughts that are distorted or not accurate, and how to change them into healthy, positive ones.

Week 8:  Distorted Thinking II—The 10 Thinking Traps

Week 9:  Distorted Thinking III—How distorted thinking can lead to anti-social activity.

Week 10:  Problem Solving Skills

Week 11:  Stress and Anger Management/Impulse Control

Week 12:  Making the Most of My Resources

 Week 13:  Wrap Up /Evaluation

Four classes have been conducted for men at the Montgomery County Correctional Facility (MCCF) since 2011. Twenty-five individuals graduated from the class. Advocates also worked with more than 40 individuals regarding justice issues. A fifth class began in August 2012.

Two classes were also held in the community for men and women on probation or parole, or who may be facing charges. At Central MH/MR in Norristown, 8 individuals graduated from the class. At Creative Health Inc. in Pottstown, 5 individuals graduated from the class.

Some comments from participants:

“Community Advocates class got me to take a good look at how my thinking has gotten me in trouble and taught me ways to change and/or prevent it.”

“I think distorted thinking (self-serving) is something I do. I have realized ways to avoid altercations.  This class helps me be more social…helps me get ready for the outside.”

 “If this class and Advocacy Team were around twenty years ago, I might not of had to go through the living hell my life has been since the early 1990s. I learned better understanding of my actions and errors.”

 “I have learned that you have to think about the consequences behind everything that you do.”