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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

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.

Not Without Us (Video)
This video highlights the importance of choice, hope, and empowerment in recovery and the fact that recovery is possible. Video participants discuss their experiences of being told that they needed treatment and chemicals to balance their brains, and that then the rest of their life would follow suit. They share their belief that in fact, recovery is accomplished through working on all aspects of one's life. Psychiatric survivors share their stories of recovery and reclaiming their lives after moving away from the traditional treatment model.

Provided by the organization Peers Envisioning and Engaging in Recovery Services (P.E.E.R.S.), PEERS TV is an online collection of videos on mental health topics. Videos at PEERS TV include the organization's popular interview series Mental Health Matters, as well as other content produced by PEERS or from other organizations. Topics, which can be viewed in a menu on the right side of the PEERS TV landing page, include empowerment, spirituality, outreach, media, housing, and culture-specific videos.

A Practical Guide for People with Disabilities Who Want to Go to College
This guide seeks to assist individuals with disabilities who are considering pursuing higher education and to provide them with guidance as they navigate the various systems and processes of college applications, classes, and living arrangements. The guide offers basic information on what one's options are and what one may expect and encounter during this time in his or her life. It covers general information on supported education, or supports on campus and in the community to help people with mental health problems or physical disabilities to access educational opportunities. It also includes tips and describes practices to help individuals succeed as they overcome challenges associated with college while also coping with their disabilities in academic and social settings.

Putting Recovery at the Heart of All We Do
This brief guide provides an overview of values and principles of recovery-based services, as well as recovery-based practices and standards. It discusses ways to support individuals in moving toward health and wellness by focusing on their strengths and bringing value, hope, and meaning to their lives rather than focusing solely on pathology, symptoms, and illness.

Community Conversations About Mental Health: Planning Guide
Developed by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, the Toolkit for Community Conversations about Mental Health helps people initiate community conversations about mental health and develop community-based solutions. The Planning Guide section explores ways people can begin conversations, raise awareness, and promote access to mental health services in their communities. It can be used as a complement to the Information Brief and Discussion Guide components of the toolkit.

Community Conversations About Mental Health: Information Brief
This information brief is part of the Community Conversations About Mental Health Toolkit developed by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration to spur community discussions about mental health and mental disorders; find solutions at the community level for mental health needs, with special focus on young adults; and encourage communities to proceed with solutions that work for them to improve the mental health and overall well-being of all of their members. Through this information brief, people have an opportunity to learn about mental disorders from research and about important decisions related to these disorders to be made at the community level. The brief includes information about types of mental health problems, prevention and treatment approaches, recovery, and the impact of attitudes and beliefs. It can be used as a complement to the Discussion Guide component of the toolkit.

Youth Mental Health First Aid
This Mental Health First Aid Web page describes a new curriculum for Youth Mental Health First Aid. This education program is focused on supporting youth who are dealing with a mental health-related crisis. Youth Mental Health First Aid helps participants to identify warning signs and further understand the beneficial impact of early intervention. The course also focuses on specific mental health challenges that are more common among youth, such as depression, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, and anxiety.

The Recovery Institute
The Recovery Institute is a Community Care Behavioral Health Organization project that works in collaboration with Dr. Pat Deegan and others to have recovery-oriented services at all levels of Pennsylvania's mental health system. This project seeks to implement this in 36 Pennsylvania counties through consultation, training, online information and resources for providers, and involvement of individuals with lived experience as advisors and peer specialists at all levels of the project.

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.

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.

Managing student-athletes' mental health issues
This handbook emphasizes the mind and body connection, highlighting the importance of student-athletes' mental health and the potential of mental health to impact one's physical health. The goal of this handbook is to help coaches and other school staff working with student-athletes identify students who are at risk for mental disorders. This handbook serves as a guide that explores various mental disorders including substance use disorders and mood, anxiety, and eating disorders. It also provides guidance on helping student-athletes manage responsibilities during their recovery.

Higher education support toolkit
This toolkit serves as a guide for university staff to assist them in working effectively to support college students who have mental health problems. It includes free downloadable worksheets on how to connect with resources on campus, a self-assessment for students, and information on accommodations in college classes.

Mental health matters: BestNow! and consumer employment
In this episode of Mental Health Matters, the program coordinator and a program graduate describe the BestNow! program. This program trains peer specialists to become more active and productive in their communities, to expand on their current skills, and to encourage participants in their own vocational development.

A provider's guide to promoting economic self-sufficiency: A recovery-oriented approach
This blog post describes a guide that supports providers as they implement a recovery-oriented approach that encourages economic independence among individuals with mental and substance use disorders. The guide provides tools and techniques for guiding conversations on life goals, dreams, and financial hopes; evaluating one's ability to become self-sufficient financially; helping people develop plans for reaching their goals; and increasing individuals' understanding of economic independence and connecting with local resources.

WE can save campaign participant workbook: A workbook for people in recovery seeking economic self-sufficiency
This blog post provides information about a workbook that serves as a resource for people in recovery and providers looking to support individuals recovering from mental and substance use disorders. The workbook shares stories of recovery and consumers' own accounts of financial self-sufficiency, and it describes tools to help people with mental and substance use disorders to develop independence and financial skills and create an action plan for their lives.

Thirty of the most frequently asked questions about recovery and recovery-oriented practice (along with some beginning answers)
This comprehensive fact sheet lists 30 of the most commonly asked questions on the topic of recovery from mental disorders and recovery-oriented practice. Written as part of the Recovery to Practice initiative which works to educate service providers about recovery, this is a helpful resource for anyone interested in learning about recovery. It provides brief responses to each question and cited references.

The Community Tool Box
The Community Tool Box is a resource that provides practical tools and information for building a healthy community. Through the Community Tool Box website, individuals can access toolkits to help with becoming more engaged in community work, a troubleshooting guide to help with problem solving, and a section dedicated to connecting people to evidence-based practices.

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.

Essential tools: Improving secondary education and transition for youth with disabilities
This guide provides information for educators, community agencies, families, and workforce development specialists working to develop an environment that improves and enhances school and post-school outcomes for youth with disabilities. The guide explains an approach called community resource mapping and discusses how this approach can be used to foster interagency collaboration with the goal of ensuring that all youth have access to a broad, comprehensive, and integrated system of services.

Child trauma toolkit for educators
This toolkit serves as a resource for educators, parents, and caregivers to help them better understand and learn how to address trauma in children. It provides facts and recommendations for individuals working with children, details on the psychological and behavioral impact of trauma in children at different ages, information on childhood traumatic grief, and guidance on self-care when working with children who have experienced trauma.

Accommodation Information by Disability: A to Z
This information page from the Job Accomodation Network (JAN) website is made up of links which provide general information on various conditions and some possible accomodations employers could provide for individuals with these conditions. Resource organizations to assist in providing proper accomodations are also available through this page.

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.

SAFE program: Mental health facts for families
This online manual was developed by Dr. Michelle D. Sherman, Director of the Family Mental Health Program at the Oklahoma City VA Medical Center. Facilities use this manual to conduct an 18-session education program for the family members of those with posttraumatic stress disorder or behavioral health problems. Mental health professionals facilitate the sessions. A representative of the National Alliance on Mental Illness also attends. The manual includes information, discussion questions, and handouts for each session.

Eliminating barriers for learning: Social and emotional factors that enhance secondary education
This training package developed by SAMHSA consists of four modules, each with a trainer's outline and trainer's notes, slides, and handouts. The module's aim to increase knowledge of adolescent mental health, including risks and protective factors, show teachers and staff how to develop action plans, suggest ways to promote a mentally healthy learning environment, and help staff identify school and community resources to promote youth mental health.

Eliminating barriers for learning: An administrator's guide
This brief booklet invites school administrators to use the teacher training package developed by the EBI. It explains how the training package can help teachers and schools achieve their academic objectives and provides the practical information administrators need to implement the training.

Filing an ADA employment discrimination charge: 'Making it work for you'
This guidebook provides information about how the ADA employment discrimination administrative charge process works and what has happened when individuals with psychiatric disabilities have filed administrative claims of employment discrimination. It explains, through discussion and examples, when, where, and how to file a charge.

Services in school for children with special needs: What parents need to know
This brochure describes services in schools for Children with special needs and what parents should know. Under the Americans with Disabilities Act, the denial of educational services, programs or activities to students with disabilities is prohibited, and constitutes discrimination

Guidelines for non-handicapping language in APA journals: Committee on disabilities issues in psychology
This fact sheet provides guidelines for the use of appropriate language regarding people with disabilities.

Talking About Mental Illness
This is a program of the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, the largest mental health and addictions teaching hospital in Canada. Featuring both a teacher's guide and a community guide for working with youth, the program aims to provide education about mental illness and combat the negative misconceptions that often surround it. It is based on the experiences of three communities and how they worked to increase awareness and understanding of mental health issues while also promoting social inclusion of people who experience such issues.

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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.