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Peer Support Skill Training Curriculum and Leader’s Guide:
Responding to Urgent Situations

          “How could he shoot and kill those people?”… “Was there something that could have been done to stop him?”… “Where were the parents in all this?”… “Were there any warning signs that should have been noticed that would have prevented this tragedy from happening?” …“Did any teachers or students see or hear anything that should have warned them of the devastation to come?”
          These are very difficult questions that can be very easy to ask but tremendously difficult and complicated to answer when preventable tragedies occur. Depending on cultural factors, views, beliefs, and assumptions that one can bring to such an awful event, there can be many responses and reactions.  The most common reaction can be shock, anger and blame, which while understandable, may not be the most helpful response for making things better.

          A more thoughtful and helpful response of some kind can mean the difference between allowing tragedy to destroy us or make us stronger.  Human creativity can transform such an awful experience into something beneficial that not only helps one to cope with the present trauma but also enhances observation and response skills for the future.  In support of this human creativity, the STAR Center is pleased to announce the upcoming availability of the Peer Support Skill Training Curriculum: Responding to Urgent Situations, a set of technical assistance materials developed in partnership with Boston University’s Center for Psychiatric Rehabilitation.

          The set of materials will include a trainer’s guide and a participant workbook for skill-building geared toward teaching peers in colleges and school settings how to assess and respond to urgent situations involving behavioral health by identifying and recognizing important signs and signals and having informed and integrated responses.

          Please keep a look out for this technical assistant set coming soon from the STAR Center, or send us your request to receive these materials.        –by S. Kiosk



WhatYou’ll Learn in the Peer Student Guide:

  • Assessing critical situations

  • Devising action options

  • Implementing an effective response

  • Using learning scenarios for skill-building

  • Also available: A Leader’s Guide

A joint collaboration between the NAMI STAR Center and Boston University Center for Psychiatric Rehabilitation



  • Self-help materials and teleconference sessionson mental health and spiritual issues, including video clips of personal spiritual and recovery/wellness journeys and practices
  • Self-help materials and teleconference sessions for individuals and communities focused on successful life after involvement with the justice system
  • Technical assistance teleconferences on multicultural diversity, leadership development in underserved communities, self-help and self-management tools, practices, and resources
  • And more, included an updated and revamped Web site! Please sign up so you don’t miss these and other upcoming technical assistance products and teleconferences:

With grateful acknowledgment to the federal Center for Mental Health Services at SAMHSA for funding that makes STAR work possible. Please visit SAMHSA for more helpful and important mental health and recovery resources!


The opinions and information expressed in this message and other STAR Center products and publications May not necessarily reflect or represent the policies or views of SAMHSA/CMHS, and should not be construed as such.





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