peer support

who is pca colorado and what do they offer?

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 First, rely on the spirit and meaning of the teachings,  not on the words;  Second, rely on the teachings,  not on the personality of the teacher;  Third, rely on real wisdom,  not superficial interpretation;  And fourth, rely on the essence of your pure Wisdom Mind,  not on judgmental perceptions.

First, rely on the spirit and meaning of the teachings,
not on the words;
Second, rely on the teachings,
not on the personality of the teacher;
Third, rely on real wisdom,
not superficial interpretation;
And fourth, rely on the essence of your pure Wisdom Mind,
not on judgmental perceptions.

Thank you very much for your interest in Peer Coach Academy Colorado. Here is a brief rundown of my history working with peers. I have worked as a peer manager since I began working It Takes A Village in 2006, co-facilitating a substance use treatment group as a peer facilitator for a grant-funded program. I transitioned to Denver Health HIV clinics, started a newsletter and a not-for-profit dedicated to addressing stigma and adherence to care. In 2012 I transitioned to the Methadone clinic and began a peer support program intended to put patients successfully managing their own Methadone adherence in front of patients who were new to the program or struggling. I partnered with AFR for training and implemented a peer-to-peer program that continues to this day. The hospital experience provided me with a fairly basic understanding of mental health issues, common challenges for people who are dually diagnosed as well as a plethora of resources available.

 

I began to realize that our community needed more than the training and support Colorado had, so in 2014 upon leaving Denver Health, I traveled to Connecticut and trained with an early pioneer of the National Recovery movement CCAR ( www.ccar.us) .  The training was profound and includes a remarkable section focused on power and privilege which invites participants to understand the challenges  and stigma that people of color and other minorities experience in our systems.  I keep up a healthy professional relationship with CCAR and can tap into their years of Recovery Coach experience if the situation were to arise.

 

Since then, I have worked on a recovery-oriented  treatment option for multiple DUI offenders featuring a peer co-facilitator and using a cognitive based recovery oriented curriculum instead of the same one most have used at least one time earlier. I have collaborated with Colorado Mental Wellness Network to bring recovery coach trainings to their catalog of peer trainings.

 

What I believe is essentially missing from most peer programs I have encountered in Colorado are supervision, professionalism, education, and boundaries. PCA has assembled 5 continuing education trainings including Ethics, MAT, Legal Recovery Coaching. These supportive shorter program give the coaches an opportunity to reassess their skills. receive healthy feedback, reconnect with the larger recovery coach community, and learn new information about the field all of which enlarges their perspectives and creates stronger values.; 

 

I have demonstrated strong supervision skills in my career. As a CAC III, I have been supervising CAC’s for the last 5 years. With regard to Recovery Coaches, I am fortunate enough to maintain contact and relationships with most of the coaches that have graduated my trainings. Many continue to work with others to this day.

 

I am attaching a copy of the 4 day training agenda (40 hours) On a 5th day (or 5th and 6th days later) we could add any of the extra modules like Ethics or Legal Recovery Coaching to compliment and strengthen skills. If the group would benefit from diversity, I can invite one or two trainees of different cultures or backgrounds to take part.  

I hope this is not too long. I get excited as I talk about this work.  Please feel free to edit and/or request more if needed. 

With Gratitude

Rod Rushing CAC III
Recovery Coach Trainer and Consultant
PCA 4 day

not the kind a girl…

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“I never see what has been done; I only see what remains to be done.” — Buddha
“I never see what has been done; I only see what remains to be done.”
— Buddha

i actually have the weekend off for the first time i can remember in months. it seems nothing short of sublime. i have putzed around the house putting as much back into place since the refurbishment started in april. i still have quite a bit of work left, but i can see progress and the place feels like work has been done and it’s good.

had a great conversation with an organization from nyc who develop trainings for peers in tandem with ccar. it’s a couple who collaborate. one works in elementary level education and they apply the standards and the techniques that are geared toward helping people learn to their curriculum. it nothing short of exciting. they have a self-care for coaches training, a skills building workshop, and a mat (medicated assisted treatment i.e. methadone, suboxone, etc) all of which i am excited to help bring to colorado. i am told there is “how to supervise peer coaches” training which could be so so so helpful here.

i did speak to a former colleague this week about helping me with board development for pca colorado. luck for me he agreed. i only hope that we all can follow through. this feels like it might be the last time i try to create something around peer support. i honestly would like to see it through.

i will attend a meeting with the recovery committee for the bhpac on monday. i must say i’m a bit leery. since all the investigatory drama with a local recovery organization and ccar, i feel a bit uneasy about seeing the director.

The tide is high but I’m holdin’ on
I’m gonna be your number one
I’m not the kind-a girl who gives up just like that, oh no

It’s not the things you do that tease and hurt me bad
But it’s the way you do the things you do to me
I’m not the kind-a girl who gives up just like that, oh no

The tide is high but I’m holdin’ on
I’m gonna be your number one, number one.

Ev’ry girl wants you to be her man
But I’ll wait my dear till it’s my turn
I’m not the kind-a girl who gives up just like that, oh no

The tide is high but I’m holdin’ on
I’m gonna be your number one, number one, number one

Ev’ry girl wants you to be her man
But I’ll wait my dear till it’s my turn
I’m not the kind-a girl who gives up just like that, oh no

The tide is high but I’m holding on
I’m gonna be your number one, number one, number one

The tide is high but I’m holding on
I’m gonna be your number one
The tide is high but I’m holding on
I’m gonna be your number one
The tide is high but I’m holding on
I’m gonna be your number one

recovery coach academy (rca) colorado needs you….. love on the run

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Abstract Resources beyond self and family to resolve significant alcohol and other drug problems have historically been provided in two venues: professionally directed addiction treatment and peer-based recovery mutual aid. Recently, recovery support organizations have emerged that share characteristics of both venues, what we identify as hybrid mutual aid (HMA). The purpose of this article is to offer a conceptual framework for HMA followed by analysis of the philosophical positions and practices of two contemporary HMA groups. The integration of these practices has the potential to impact group emergence and maintenance, while raising significant ethical questions related to governance and fiscal management...
Abstract
Resources beyond self and family to resolve significant alcohol and other drug problems have historically been provided in two venues: professionally directed addiction treatment and peer-based recovery mutual aid. Recently, recovery support organizations have emerged that share characteristics of both venues, what we identify as hybrid mutual aid (HMA). The purpose of this article is to offer a conceptual framework for HMA followed by analysis of the philosophical positions and practices of two contemporary HMA groups. The integration of these practices has the potential to impact group emergence and maintenance, while raising significant ethical questions related to governance and fiscal management…

the film “groundhog day” is a fairly well-known metaphor for addiction because the lead character is stuck in a world with the same events and the same outcome every single day. commonplace dogma in the recovery world is that it’s insanity to do the same thing over and over expecting different results i.e. if your life is in disarray from your partying,  and continue drinking and using in the same manner, all the while believing a different outcome will happen is a form of insanity. it’s not until bill murray starts to make changes that the outcomes start to change too and when he changes everything, his whole world and the outcomes transform.

in working in the treatment community for about a decade, an irony has revealed itself to me. treatment providers and the governmental organizations that oversee those services seem to be living in that very same “groundhog day”. the federal monies commandeered to address coloradans with behavioral health issues continue to be dispersed in mostly the same same way as earlier years even when the outcomes do not show improvement. certainly that is how mass incarceration became such an easy solution. putting someone in prison becomes an illusion which gives the appearance that the problem has gone away when the problem has really only been hidden from plain view.

so the insanity is revealed when the treatment provider community keeps doing the same things every day expecting a different outcome. there is dialogue that peer involvement (proven success) is important from every level of our state officials. but there is little evidence of anything more than talk. our mental health and substance programs may have bits and sprinkles of peer support, however the system remains unchanged and continues to do things in the same fashion expecting different results.

rca colorado remains committed to a more foundational change to our system of prevention, treatment, and recovery. we fully believe that people who have found personal success have equally important input into our system as do the folks who are trying to run businesses and manage p & l’s.  and we are excited about this challenge.

in moving forward with the recovery coach training process and the collaboration with colorado mental wellness network, it becomes clear that there are volunteer needs on many levels. it is going to be interesting, and challenging, and exciting to begin and take part this process. we hope to meet some fantastic folks along the way. we need you.

rca colorado needs:

  1. a space/building to house meetings, coaching, job support, trainings, board meetings.
  2. board members with business or development savvy.
  3. board members with mental health, recovery, family involvement, legal system, insight and experience.
  4. diverse community participation at all levels.
  5. empathetic recovery coach mentors .
  6. internet tech and internet design gurus.
  7. passion for recovery and recovery support.
  8. healthy desire to change the system.
  9. creative brain(s) to document the next chapter of our story.
  10. fundraising champions.

this is certainly a very first step in mapping out the future of rca colorado. if you are interested in starting a conversation with us or participating, please contact me at rod@rodrushing.com. our community deserves a change and we hope to be a positive part of that evolution.

in lieu of posting a clip of “groundhog day” i am opting for the video for “love on the run” by chicane- it’s good 90’s electronica, and the video is really cute.

transmission

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“Your purpose in life is to find your purpose and give your whole heart and soul to it” ― Gautama Buddha
“Your purpose in life is to find your purpose and give your whole heart and soul to it”
― Gautama Buddha

Slide2

 

i have posted some efforts i have engaged in during my recovery before. i founded an hiv newsletter for Denver and helped kickstart a peer advocacy organization for hiv+ which created a platform for educational forums, dinners for newly diagnosed, and the continuation of 2 weekend retreats in majestic  grand lake colorado.

i haven’t ever really hesitated with beginning things until i started working at the public hospital. that somehow put the fear of judgement and failure in me. prior to this however, i had already lost everything, so losing didn’t hold any weight or influence my decisions.

about a year into the not-for-profit business a friend named carl frazier was murdered on the outskirts of downtown. there was much gossip and innuendo about his death. people were saying the coldest and most unkind things. it was very disappointing. carl’s sister came to denver to speak with detectives about the details they had on the case. i met with her and she showed me the murder site, and gave me a rundown of their paltry case. she was frustrated and being the good co-dependent i am, my heart went out to her.

so simultaneously i encountered disappointment with my hiv community and their seemingly nasty habit of back biting their comrades and the visible and palpable heartbreak of a siblings sense of frustration and loss. i decided to create an award to thank a member of our community for their volunteerism and advocacy. since 2009, treatment education network (ten) has recognized a member of our small community to say “thank you” for their hard work and efforts.

carl’s murderer has since been discovered. he was killed during a robbery in 2012 and discovered through dna samples. i have resigned from ten and am no longer involved in the game. and the current members have decided that i should be recognized this year to receive the carl frazier commemorative award. i don’t feel the same way but i have learned that visibilty can be as supportive as a good ear and a strong shoulder.

so i will suit up and show up. better than shooting up and throwing up.

 

real or rhetoric?

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“When a child grows old enough to know J.R.R. Tolkien was just staring at a typewriter, the truth can be a wounding exposé.”  ― Dennis Cooper, The Marbled Swarm
“When a child grows old enough to know J.R.R. Tolkien was just staring at a typewriter, the truth can be a wounding exposé.”
― Dennis Cooper, The Marbled Swarm

 

coupla new grooves today….

decided to get involved with the committee community again. it’s a strange breed this “cbo” (community based organization) sub-pop. most of these networks and councils often remind me of going to a dance in high school. so many people sitting around checking everybody else out and waiting for something to happen. then when grants are released, it’s like the latest hit records get played. there’s lots of out of your chair activity, plenty of drama,  and then we see who the popular kids are this season.

 

 

meanwhile (love that word) i just got the latest mark ronson release… still taking it for a walk…

 

 

simply beautiful

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"Simply Beautiful" If I gave you my love, I tell you what I'd do I'd expect a whole lotta love outta you You gotta be good to me I'm gonna be good to you There's a whole lotta things you and I Could do Hey hey Hey hey hey Simply beautiful simply beautiful simply Beautiful Simply beautiful simply beautiful simply Beauti.. Simply beautiful Simply beautiful Simply beautiful Simply beautiful What about the way you love me And the way you squeeze me Hey Hey simply beautiful hey And you get right down it And the love is getting you through it Simply beautiful [Repeat to end]
“Simply Beautiful”
If I gave you my love,
I tell you what I’d do
I’d expect a whole lotta love outta you
You gotta be good to me
I’m gonna be good to you
There’s a whole lotta things you and I
Could do
Hey hey
Hey hey hey
Simply beautiful simply beautiful simply
Beautiful
Simply beautiful simply beautiful simply
Beauti..
Simply beautiful
Simply beautiful
Simply beautiful
Simply beautiful
What about the way you love me
And the way you squeeze me
Hey
Hey simply beautiful hey
And you get right down it
And the love is getting you through it
Simply beautiful [Repeat to end]

Al Green

(Singer and songwriter, born April 13, 1946 in Forrest City, Arkansas) From the pulpit to the stage, whether he’s singing hymns or crooning love songs, Al Green stirs our souls. His songs have been covered by the likes of Annie Lennox, Dave Matthews Band and The Grateful Dead. Bruce Springsteen has used the chorus of “Take Me to the River” during live performances of his epic “Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out.” The legend has sold more than 20 million albums, won 11 Grammys, and received the Lifetime Achievement Award at the 2002 Grammy Awards. Rolling Stoneranked him as one of the 100 Greatest Singers of All Time.”My head’s . . . into music,” said Green. “I’m a freak for music, I can’t get away from the music . . . can’t get away from the stage.”

One of the 1970’s most popular vocalists, Albert Greene (he would later drop the “e” at the end of his name) was born on April 13, 1946, to a family of sharecroppers in Forrest City, Arkansas. Singing gospel was a part of his life from an early age as he toured the gospel circuits of the South with the Greene Brothers, a quartet he formed with his siblings. Later transitioning from gospel to pop, he formed Al Greene and the Creations when he was only 16. But it was in Midland, Texas, in 1969 where Green met his most important music collaborator, Willie Mitchell. The bandleader, producer and a vice president of Memphis’s Hi Records signed Green, leading to his first single, a cover of the Beatles’ “I Want to Hold Your Hand.” Mitchell became Green’s producer and songwriting partner for the next eight years.

Green’s first gold single, “Tired of Being Alone,” reached No. 11 on the pop charts and No. 7 on the R&B charts in 1971. In the early days, Green loved the music he heard from the likes of the great singers of the day and tried to imitate their sound. During an all-night recording session of Green’s hit single “Let’s Stay Together,” Mitchell kept asking Green to stop imitating Jackie Wilson. Green left the studio in anger and told CBS Sunday Morning in 2005, “I rode around for 20 minutes, I came back and I said, ‘Forget this, man. I’m just going to sing this and I’m not going to put any feeling in it. I’m not going to put no emphasis in it. I’m just leaving it dry, just sing it.'” After a single line of music, Al Green had found his sound.

The song was part of a three-year string of gold singles, including the soul classics “You Ought to Be with Me,” “Here I Am (Come and Take Me),” and “Take Me to the River.” Talking Heads scored one of their biggest hits with a cover of “Take Me to the River.” In the liner notes for Once in a Lifetime: The Best of Talking Heads, singer David Byrne wrote, “Coincidence or conspiracy? There were at least four cover versions of this song out at the same time: Foghat, Bryan Ferry, Levon Helm, and us…A song that combines teenage lust with baptism. Not equates, you understand, but throws them in the same stew, at least. A potent blend.”

But Green felt a different calling in the mid-70s; a religious experience while he was on tour led him to great personal change. He purchased a church building in 1976 and was ordained pastor of the Full Gospel Tabernacle Church, just down the street from Graceland. However, Green continued to pursue his pop career, preaching at his church only when he was not on tour. When he fell off the stage at a 1979 concert in Cincinnati without serious injuries, he considered the incident a warning from God and public appearances were limited to only religious services in churches across the country. Gospel label Myrrh released his 1980s religious recordings featuring standard hymns and Green’s originals—a style that mixes Memphis soul with gospel.

He wouldn’t stay away from the Memphis soul sound of his roots for good, returning with the 1992 recording Don’t Look Back. Willie Mitchell and the soul singer reunited on 2003’s I Can’t Stop, working together for the first time in 18 years. At the age of 62, Green released Lay It Down in 2008, produced by Green, Poyser, and the Roots’ Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson. “No one has range like Al Green,” noted Thompson. “He’s like a five-part harmony chorus inside his own body. There’s the falsetto Al Green, church growling Al Green, ferocious soulful Al Green. There’s the very church mouse Al Green. And then there’s the comic side that no one really sees.” The album featured duets with artists such as John Legend, Corrine Bailey Rae and Anthony Hamilton. “It’s an honor to get to work with someone who I’ve always loved and respected, who’s been an important part of black music history, and pop music history for that matter,” said Legend of the experience.

Green’s performing prowess continues to surprise. When two singer cancellations affected the 2009 Grammy Awards, the producer asked Justin Timberlake to perform. Timberlake declared, “Al Green. If Al Green will do ‘Let’s Stay Together’ with me, I can do it.” After a quick rehearsal, Grammy lore was made.

Al Green embodies the Memphis Sound—funky soul music, shimmering and sultry in its style, a perfect blend of the spiritual and profane. He would straddle the line of sacred and secular throughout his career, being inducted into both the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Gospel Music Hall of Fame, dubbed “The Soul Doctor” as well as the Right Reverend Al Green. “The music is the message, the message is the music,” preached Green. “So that’s my little ministry that the Big Man upstairs gave to me—a little ministry called love and happiness.”…. reprinted from kennedy center website….