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U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Department of Health and Human Services
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration

Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Administration

Last Updated: 6/22/2012

SAMHSA’s Resource Center to Promote Acceptance,
Dignity and Social Inclusion Associated with
Mental Health (ADS Center)


Brochures, Fact Sheets, Guides and Toolkits

Life in the Community for Everyone!
This DVD set can be used by mental health and substance use treatment providers, and providers of other services, working with Latino families. The DVDs are in English and Spanish, and they come with a facilitator guide, also in English and Spanish, to help providers use them as teaching tools. They are designed to support Latino families in helping prevent, identify, and address mental health and substance use problems in their family members. They cover topics including communication; acculturation; mental health; violence; and alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs.

íVida en la comunidad para todos! (DVD)
This DVD set can be used by mental health and substance use treatment providers, and providers of other services, working with Latino families. The DVDs are in English and Spanish, and they come with a facilitator guide, also in English and Spanish, to help providers use them as teaching tools. They are designed to support Latino families in helping prevent, identify, and address mental health and substance use problems in their family members. They cover topics including communication; acculturation; mental health; violence; and alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs.

A Window of Opportunity: Philanthropy's Role in Eliminating Health Disparities through Integrated Health Care
This report is a product of a February 2012 meeting hosted by the Hogg Foundation for Mental Health in Austin, TX, and attended by representatives of national, regional, and local foundations that do work in the area of integrated health care, or integration of primary health care with mental health and substance use treatment services. Meeting participants discussed ways in which foundations can support integrated health care to help eliminate disparities among racial and ethnic minorities and people with limited English proficiency. The report examines the issue of health disparities, how integrated care can help combat these disparities, and ways in which philanthropic individuals and groups can promote integration of care and reduction of health disparities.

Building Bridges: LGBT Populations; A Dialogue on Advancing Opportunities for Recovery from Addictions and Mental Health Problems
A product of a meeting held by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration's Center for Mental Health Services, this report notes that many mental health and substance use problems are more common among lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people. Additionally, negative misperceptions and discrimination against LGBT people may make it harder for people in these groups to get the same quality of mental health and substance use treatment services available to others. The report identifies factors that promote or get in the way of recovery for LGBT consumers. It also recommends ways to improve these services-and thus chances of recovery-for LGBT people.

Improving Quality and Access to Integrated Care for Racially Diverse and Limited English Proficiency Communities
Developed by the SAMHSA-HRSA Center for Integrated Health Solutions and the Federal Office of Minority Health, this webinar presents information on integration of mental health and substance use services and primary care services in ways that are culturally and linguistically competent, with the ultimate goal of reducing health disparities. The webinar covers standards, recommendations, and specific ways to make care more culturally and linguistically competent in order to boost access to quality physical and mental health care and substance use treatment. Webinar materials and other archived webinars are available at

Consumer Cultural Activation Prompts (CAPs): A New Consumer Tool to Encourage Consumers to Let Providers Know About What Culturally Matters To Them
This presentation was part of a webinar by the STAR Center, a national technical assistance center funded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. It introduces CAPs, which consumers of mental health and substance use services can use to identify aspects of their own culture and communicate these aspects to service providers. The webinar explores facets of cultural identity and associated CAPs, such as trauma related to cultural identity and cultural views of recovery. It also identifies ways CAPs could be used, including on a "cultural card" that consumers could use when seeking and obtaining care.

Courageous Conversations: Being Allies to Individuals in Recovery Who Experience Prejudice, Discrimination and Oppression
This presentation, part of a Webinar, discusses the importance of engaging individuals in underserved populations in efforts to decrease health disparities among various social and cultural groups. Listeners will learn about courageous conversations that work to engage individuals, sustain conversations through uncomfortable situations, and deepen them to be meaningful. The detrimental role of prejudice, discrimination, and oppression is also discussed in a mental health context along with how one can help combat this issue through cultural empathy. The full recording is available at

National Stakeholder Strategy for Achieving Health Equity
Created by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' National Partnership for Action to End Health Disparities, this action plan seeks to create a common set of goals for both public and private efforts to help reduce health disparities among underserved populations. Local organizations and initiatives can utilize this document to help them identify what their objectives should be as they work to improve health services and what strategies they may utilize in the process.

HHS Action Plan to Reduce Racial and Ethnic Health Disparities
The HHS Action Plan to Reduce Racial and Ethnic Health Disparities defines the goals and action plan of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to address health disparities among racial and ethnic minorities. The plan focuses on policies and programs to address these issues and also on how the department can best promote integrated, evidence-based services and best practices within established health care systems. This plan includes discussion on how the HHS can leverage the Affordable Care Act in solving these issues.

Toolkit for Community Action
This toolkit was created by the National Partnership for Action to End Health Disparities to engage individuals, communities, and organizations to work together to implement programs and policies which foster opportunities for individuals to have access to health care and the capabilities to achieve their full health potential. It includes information to help raise awareness about health disparity issues and engage community members in conversations for creating solutions and tools to take action to promote these changes throughout the community.

The Affordable Care Act Resource Kit
This toolkit was created by the National Partnership for Action to End Health Disparities (NPA) to assist community stakeholders and affiliate organizations interested in doing outreach to educate the public about the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and facilitate enrollment in their State-based healthcare markets. The kit includes key messaging to promote; a guide for putting on events and taking action; a glossary of key terms; a wide range of special topic resources including information about ACA benefits for people with disabilities, ACA benefits for veterans and military families, ACA resources related to racial and ethnic minorities, and others; and a large directory of general ACA resources in 11 languages.

Pathways to Integrated Health Care: Strategies for African American Communities and Organizations; Consensus Statements and Recommendations
This report incorporates findings from a national dialogue on effective holistic health for African Americans hosted by the Office of Minority Health in August 2010. Key stakeholders from across the country were brought together to discuss ways to improve behavioral and primary healthcare delivery systems, reduce negative attitudes, increase cultural competence and proficiency of services, and improve health across the life span of African Americans in a holistic manner. The report presents the history of the issues it covers, along with examples of successful integrated care models; consensus statements; and recommendations for policy, projects, and further research and evaluation.

Cultural Competency in Mental Health Peer-run Programs and Self-help Groups: A Tool to Assess and Enhance Your Services
This guide helps mental health provider organizations to evaluate the cultural competency of their programs and provides action plans and ideas about how to enhance any potential shortcomings. To achieve this, the guide looks at five program areas, including administration, policies, and guidelines; peer providers and group leaders; services and support; program and group environment; and communication and language capacity.

THRIVE: Community Tool for Health & Resilience In Vulnerable Environments
The Prevention Institute, with funding from the Office of Minority Health, part of U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, developed and then recently updated this community health and resilience toolkit. The toolkit was designed to assist communities in reducing the inequalities that minorities have experienced and in attaining better health outcomes for all community members. To achieve these positive outcomes, the toolkit helps community members pinpoint issues that are contributing to disparities and learn how to take action to effect improvements.

Wellness Recovery Action Plan (WRAP) for Veterans and People in the Military
The Wellness Recovery Action Plan (WRAP) has long been used as a tool for helping individuals manage life, adapt to challenges associated with mental health issues, and stay on a path of recovery. In this version of WRAP, Mary Ellen Copeland focuses on people in the military and veterans who need strategies for coping with issues, meeting life goals, and building strong relationships. Recognizing early warning signs, a daily maintenance plan, and triggers are a few other topics she explores in this book.

What is "people first" language?
Language can have a big impact on how things are interpreted and internalized, by individuals and by society as a whole. It has the potential to offend and also, empower and convey respect. This AskEARN fact sheet on "people first" language lists some of the negative language to be avoided and more appropriate language to use when referring to individuals with disabilities, including people with mental health issues.

Enhancing mental health service delivery to Hispanics: An online toolkit for eliminating disparities
This toolkit is made up of a number of print, video, and audio resources for helping mental health agency providers and leadership provide culturally competent support to Hispanics. By providing specific guidance on how to effectively engage and attract Hispanics, this toolkit helps increase understanding of the unique needs of Hispanics when seeking mental health services.

Stories of Recovery: Minister Monique Tarver
In this PEERS TV Stories of Recovery video, Minister Monique Tarver shares her story of triumph and recovery from mental health issues. She talks about how these challenges impacted her role as a parent, how her faith and family support were a major part of her progress, and ways the mental health and faith communities can work together to further enhance one's journey through recovery from a mental disorder.

Call to clergy: How to support mental health challenges in your congregation
This Webinar, which took place on October 9, 2012, provides guidance to leaders in different faith communities in providing mental health support to members of their congregations. This presentation explores ways to address mental health within different faiths including African American, Islamic, and Jewish faith communities. It outlines general statistics of the percentage of adults in the U.S. with different mental disorders, describes the basics of the mental health first aid approach, and discusses what recovery from a mental disorder can mean. Both the recording and the presentation are available on the National Council for Behavioral Health's Web site:

Shining stars - young adults in recovery
This documentary was created by Advocacy Unlimited, Inc., one of the SAMHSA ADS Center's 2010 Campaign for Social Inclusion awardees. Shining Stars is a 17-minute, culturally sensitive, educational documentary featuring the recovery stories of four young adults with mental health and substance use issues. The four young adults share their recovery journeys, which include experiences of loss, trauma, and other struggles. While sharing their stories, each "shining star" describes the hope he or she has for continuing on the path of recovery.

Mental Health Matters: RAP therapy; Beats, rhymes and life
Mental Health Matters is a public access television show that highlights various mental health issues. This episode, "RAP Therapy: Beats, Rhymes and Life," explores a community organization that uses rap, hip-hop, and pop culture to promote wellness and mental health among youth. The episode also explores the use of rap therapy as an intervention around the world.

Engaging women in trauma-informed peer support: A guidebook
Developed by the National Association of State Mental Health Program Directors and Advocates for Human Potential, Inc. with funding by SAMHSA, this guide can be used by peer supporters working in the behavioral health and human services systems to learn to integrate trauma-informed principles into their work supporting women who have experienced trauma. It provides culturally oriented resources and tools for trauma-informed peer support for women. The 13 chapters cover a number of key topics such as spirituality and religion, storytelling, and reclaiming one's power through social action.

Mental Health Matters: Consumer Movements Around the World
This episode of the television show Mental Health Matters features leaders within the mental health consumer/survivor movement from four different countries. These leaders are members of an organization called Interrelate, which is described as an international coalition of national consumer user organizations. Throughout this show they discuss specific issues related to individuals with mental disorders within their countries and also discuss similarities they share.

NCCTS leadership: Culture and trauma
Recognizing how culture influences the way traumatic experiences are perceived, this National Child Traumatic Stress Network (NCTSN) factsheet discusses the importance of culturally competent trauma-informed treatments. The factsheet describes guidelines for culturally competent service providers, shares information on National Center for Child Traumatic Stress (NCCTS) initiatives such as the NCTSN culture listserv, and describes a vision for the future treatment of individuals impacted by trauma. The factsheet also describes the NCTSN mission to enhance services for children who have been traumatized.

The Sanctuary Model: An integrated theory
The Sanctuary Model is an evidence-based, trauma-informed cultural approach that outlines a method for developing an organizational culture within which individuals who have experienced trauma can receive the support necessary to promote healing. This Web site provides a list of features of a certified Sanctuary organization; various links to learn more about this model, including details about the historical foundation and components of the model; and additional information on related news, publications, and products and services.

Building Communites from the Inside Out: A Path Toward Finding and Mobilizing a Community's Assets
This guide outlines strategies for communities to start asset-based development, an approach to community development in which local citizens' associations, community members and leaders, and institutions work together to build and repair their communities using an approach that focuses on identifying community strengths rather than deficiencies as the starting point in addressing community needs. This guide provides success stories of various communities across the United States and provides an introduction to strategies learned from neighborhood leaders.

Cultural competency in mental health peer-run programs and self-help groups: A tool to assess and enhance your services
This tool helps behavioral health and consumer-run programs and groups to evaluate their levels of cultural competency. This resource works to help individuals recognize ways they may already embrace diversity and identify areas where improvements could be made. It focuses on five key areas: administration and policies, peer providers and group leaders, services and support, program and group environment, and communication and language capacity.

The Summary Plan: Bringing the Strategy to Life 2009-2011
This national action plan outlines the second phase of the 'See Me' campaign in Scotland. Within this phase, the 'See Me' campaign will focus on discrimination in communities where individuals are met with greater barriers and are more likely to experience behavioral health problems. This campaign strives to end negative perceptions of and discrimination against people with behavioral health problems. The plan describes an approach that creates cultural change to ensure the support of people experiencing behavioral health problems.

Certified peer specialist training program descriptions
Behavioral health consumers who are interested in becoming certified peer specialists will find this reference helpful. The document, compiled in 2006, describes certification programs in Arizona, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, and South Carolina.

Grading the States 2009
This interactive map provides an overview of the National Alliance on Mental Illness's 2009 State-by-State evaluation of mental health care systems. The Nation as a whole received a 'D' for the health care it provides to people with serious mental illness. The organization graded based on community integration and social inclusion, empowerment, and other factors. The full report, describing methodology, findings, and recommendations, is available for download.

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This Web site was developed under contract with the Office of Consumer Affairs in SAMHSA’s Center for Mental Health Services. The views, opinions, and content provided on this Web site do not necessarily reflect the views, opinions, or policies of SAMHSA or HHS. The resources listed in this Web site are not all-inclusive and inclusion on this Web site does not constitute an endorsement by SAMHSA or HHS.