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2008 Post Conference Institute: 5-day Peer Specialist Training

DBSA Peer Specialist Training
September 15-19, 2008
Sheraton NorfolkWaterside Hotel


Training Description

DBSA Peer Specialist training prepares people who live with mental illnesses to use their experiences to work with others as peer specialists. Facilitated by nationally-recognized trainers, this comprehensive course delivers a foundation in recovery principles, intervention techniques and ethical practice. Curriculum focuses on the use of peer-delivered services to support the recovery of others. DBSA Peer Specialist training is delivered in affiliation with Appalachian Consulting Group, Inc., innovators of the Georgia Certified Peer Specialist Project that pioneered Medicaid-billable peer support services.

Training topics include:

  • Role of peer support in recovery
  • Problem solving with individuals
  • Effective listening and the art of asking questions
  • Combating negative self-talk
  • Dissatisfaction as an avenue for change
  • Facilitating recovery dialogues
  • Peer specialist ethics
  • …and more

Who Can Participate

  • Individuals age 18 or older with personal experience as consumers of mental health services who wish to use this experience to assist others
  • Those willing to publicly identify as a person living with a mental illness
    [Please do NOT apply if you do not meet
    these first two standards.]
  • DBSA especially encourages people who currently hold a peer specialist position or who are actively seeking such a position (paid or volunteer) to apply, although this is not a requirement to participate.
  • DBSA actively seeks a diverse group of training
    applicants with respect to race, gender, age,
    sexual orientation, diagnosis and disability.

Training participants must commit to:

  • attend and actively participate in five full days of training participate in discussion and role-plays utilizing solely their personal experiences as mental health consumers rather than any clinical roles or training
  • take a written certification examination within four weeks of training completion

Sheraton Norfolk Waterside Hotel
777 Waterside Drive
Norfolk, Virginia 23510

Training begins at 8:30 A.M. on Monday,
September 15, 2008 and ends at approximately
2:00 P.M. on Friday, September 19, 2008.

Registration Fee
$950 per person includes training fee and all training materials, beverage breaks, continental breakfast (MondayFriday) and post-training certification testing. Do not submit payment with this application. Registration fees will be due at a later date.

Fee does NOT include hotel accommodations, travel or meals other than breakfast. Participants are responsible for paying these costs or obtaining outside funding support. Participants are eligible to receive the discounted DBSA conference rate on hotel rooms ($109 plus tax) at the Sheraton Norfolk Waterside.  NOTE: YOu must state that you are with the DBSA Conference to obtain these discounted rate.



Please mail or fax your completed application to:

Attn: Peer Services Department
730 North Franklin Street, Suite 501
Chicago, Illinois 60610
Phone: (800) 826-3632, Ext. 155
Fax: (312) 642-7243

  • E-mailed applications are NOT accepted.
  • Do not submit payment with this application.
  • This is an application only and does not guarantee
    you will be selected.
  • All applicants will be notified of their status no later than July 15, 2008. Registration payment will be due at that time.

Enrollment is limited, and participants will be selected through a competitive application.



Conference Agenda
Pre & Post Conference Institutes
Chapter Leadership Forum
Speaker Gallery
Hotel & Travel Center
Special Events
Comedy Night
Registration Center
Registration Form (PDF)

DBSA 2008 National Conference
Online Registration Available Now!

Downloadable registration form to fax or mail (PDF)

with special package discounts when you regsiter for pre-conference institutes and the conference.


Sheraton Norfolk Waterside
777 Waterside Drive
Norfolk, VA 23510
Toll-Free: (888) 627-8042 for reservations*
(*You must identify yourself as a DBSA Conference attendee)

sheraton pool sheraton pool
sheraton room sheraton dining

Room Rates* for DBSA Conference Attendees
$109/night (Single Occupancy + tax)
$109/night (Double Occupancy + tax)
$129/night (Triple Occupancy + tax)
$129/night (Quadruple Occupancy + tax)
(*You must identify yourself as a DBSA Conference attendee)

Parking Rate for DBSA Conference Attendees
(Rate is for valet parking with in/out privileges.)

Considering an extended stay?
The above rates apply Monday, September 8, through Friday, September 19, 2008.

Reservation Cut-Off Date: 
Book your hotel room by August 11, 2008 for guaranteed discount. After the August 11 cut-off date, reservations will be accepted, based on availability, at the regular room rate. Room cancellations must be made no later than 24 hours before your scheduled date of arrival.

All conference sessions will be held at the hotel.

Learn more about the features/amenities of the Sheraton Norfolk Waterside Hotel here.