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Effectively Employing Young Adult Peer Providers: A Toolkit

1. Background  

  • Young Adults with Serious Mental Health Conditions
  • Newer Services Designed to Meet the Needs of Young Adults
  • Peer Support Providers

2. Young Adults in the Peer Provider Role

  • Benefits and Positive Outcomes
  • The Challenges of Implementation

3. Conceptualizing & Structuring the Young Adult Peer Role in Your Agency

  • Conceptualizing and Structuring the Role
  • Consideration of Relational Boundary Issues

4. Establishing an Organizational Culture that Supports Young Adult Peers

  • Valuing Peer Support
  • Understanding the Experience and Culture of Today's Young Adults
  • Recognizing and Addressing Workplace Stigma
  • Embracing Legal Obligations to not Discriminate Against Employees with Disabilities
  • Diversity of Person, Perspective and Experience
  • A Positive Development Approach to Treatment and Services
  • Self-determination and Dignity of Risk
  • Employee Access to Wellness Tools, Services and Supports

5. Recruiting, Hiring and Training Young Adult Peers

  • Recruiting and Hiring
  • Training Young Adult Peers
  • Teach Principles of Strategic Storytelling
  • Review and Discuss Peer Provider Disclosure Policies

6. Effective Supervision for Young Adult Peer Providers

  • Principles of Young Adult Peer Supervision
  • Essential Topics
  • The Importance of the Young Adult Peer-supervisor Working Alliance
  • Bolstering on the Job Resiliency
  • Training, Supervision, and Support for Young Adult Peer Supervisors
  • Moving On

7. Addressing Significant Job Difficulties by Effectively Negotiating Reasonable Accommodations

  • Introduction
  • RA Mandate Basics
  • There are Clearly Described Protocols for Employees to Request Accommodations or Other Assistance for Disability-related Job Difficulties
  • Employers and Employees Use of Appropriate Interactive Tools and Processes to Discuss RA Solutions
  • RA Responsibilities are Clearly Defined and Understood by the Employer and Staff
  • Supervisors Have the Willingness and Support to Address Accommodation Issues

8. Preparing and Engaging Non-peer Staff

  • Training and Support for Non-Peer Staff
  • Team Building Strategies

9. Infrastructure and Framework

  • Commited and Strong Leadership
  • Strong Organizational Communications that Endorse the Young Adult Peer Role
  • Connecting and Working with Human Resources Departments
  • Effective Staff Hiring and Accountability Practices
  • Young Adult Peer Influence on Internal Policies and Practice


A. Organizational Self Assessment

B. Summary of Federal Anti-discrimination Prohibitions

C. Sample Young Adult Job Description

D. Sample Memo Form

E. PDSA Form for Supervision

F. Standards for Assessing Reasonableness and Undue Hardship

G. Leave and Undue Hardship

H. Job Challenges and Accommodations Worksheet