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Peers

Learn about the role of peer workers and access recovery-related resources about peer supports and services.

Who Are Peer Workers?

Peer support workers are people who have been successful in the recovery process who help others experiencing similar situations. Through shared understanding, respect, and mutual empowerment, peer support workers help people become and stay engaged in the recovery process and reduce the likelihood of relapse. Peer support services can effectively extend the reach of treatment beyond the clinical setting into the everyday environment of those seeking a successful, sustained recovery process.

Bringing Recovery Supports to Scale Technical Assistance Center Strategy (BRSS TACS) is enriched by the lived experiences of people in recovery, who play key roles in BRSS TACS project leadership, development, and implementation.

Peer Support Role

Peer support workers engage in a wide range of activities. These include:

  • Advocating for people in recovery
  • Sharing resources and building skills
  • Building community and relationships
  • Leading recovery groups
  • Mentoring and setting goals

Peer support roles may also extend to the following:

  • Providing services and/or training
  • Supervising other peer workers
  • Developing resources
  • Administering programs or agencies
  • Educating the public and policymakers

Peer support workers may need to develop additional core competencies to provide services to specific groups who also share common experiences, such as family members. The shared experience of being in recovery from a mental health and/or substance use condition or being a family member is the foundation on which the peer recovery support relationship is built in the behavioral health arena.

Peer Support Resources

Use the following resources to learn more about the role that peers play in recovery. Please read the SAMHSA.gov Exit Disclaimer for more information on resources from non-federal websites.

Access video trainings on peer support services, youth and young adults, and other topics.

Last Updated: 11/20/2017