Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Administration

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)

Fostering and Expanding Peer Support Services for Service Members, Veterans, and their Families

Event date: 
March 27, 2013 01:00 pm - 02:30 pm EDT
Meyer, Nicholas
O'Brien-Mazza, Daniel
White, William
Harris, John

Peer support has been recognized as an important strategy in supporting the behavioral health needs of SMVF. Individuals with lived experience provide a bridge to services and help ease SMVF transition to their communities.  Peers with military experience and experience with recovery from trauma, mental health, or addiction issues offer valuable knowledge and skills to assist others. This support can be provided through a variety of established peer models.

Many states have already begun to bring their peer initiatives together across systems and now stakeholders must assess how best to work together.  Coordinated systems of peer support services for SMVF can succeed with collaboration and consensus.

This webinar will include discussions related to best practice resources and tools, how communities can build on commonalities, and the many roles peers play.  The presentation will be followed by a question and answer session.


  • Discuss opportunities for peer support services in relation to SMVF
  • Explore the recently issued Presidential Executive Order that advances peer models within the VA
  • Identify ethical considerations and decision points for developing SMVF peer models
  • Recognize the varied roles and responsibilities of SMVF peers
  • Identify resources and next steps for developing peer support services

Target Audience: Representatives from state, territory, and tribal behavioral health systems serving SMVF; representatives from military family coalitions; peer support coalitions; peer support practitioners; and advocates


Moderator: Nicholas Meyer, Assistant Director, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s Service Members, Veterans, and their Families (SMVF) Technical Assistance Center

Daniel O’Brien-Mazza, M.S., Director of Peer Support Services, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA)

William L. White, M.A., Senior Emeritus Senior Research Consultant at Chestnut Health Systems/Lighthouse Institute

John Harris, M.S.W., Q.M.H.P., Military and Veterans Program Manager, North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services

To register: Please follow the link provided below.  If you have any questions about your registration, please contact Michelle Cleary at 518-439-7415 ext. 5259 or


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