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SPOTLIGHT: Alabama Affiliate’s Education and Training Institute



The Council on Substance Abuse-NCADD (COSA-NCADD), the State Affiliate in Alabama, offers an Education & Training Institute for certified peer support specialists in partnership with the Alabama Department of Mental Health.

The primary goal of the Institute is to provide education and training on behavioral health prevention topics to professionals and community agencies providing services to populations at-risk for alcohol and substance use disorders. The training programs include Professional Ethics, HIV 101, Confidentiality and Using Recovery Oriented Principles in Your Role.

Professional Ethics
Every discipline, business and/or organization should have in place and abide by an explicit set of ethical principles. In offering any services, individuals and the agencies that employ them should govern themselves with the utmost professionalism and ensure the non-violation of those ethical principles. This training offers peer and certified recovery support specialists in-depth information regarding the importance of ethics, ethical decision making and how to identify ethical dilemmas.

Upon completion peer and certified recovery supports specialists will be able to:

  • Define ethics
  • Understand ethical obligations
  • Identify healthy ethical boundaries between specialists and clients/consumers
  • Understand ethical decision-making
  • Make ethical decisions by determining the risk of harm that actions have

HIV 101
HIV/AIDS has plagued countries around the world since its onset. With 50,000 new HIV cases each year, constant emphasis is being placed on a vaccine or cure. In this training, Peer and Certified Recovery Support Specialists are introduced to the past, present and future of HIV/AIDS; the public health crisis and the renewed focus and what it will take to reduce new infections. Participants will understand why the epidemic has disproportionately impacted certain races and demographics; and how substance abuse is a direct link to the HIV virus.

Upon completion participants will be able to:

  • Identify the difference between HIV and AIDS
  • Understand the transmission of the disease
  • Understand the impact of the disease
  • Understand why the impact of HIV/AIDS has disproportionately affected certain race and gender
  • Examine how the government has approached the epidemic

This training is directed to peer and certified recovery support specialist and offers recommended methods of safeguarding client/consumer information. Breaches in confidentiality can occur on purpose or unintentionally. Peer and certified recovery support specialists should be cognizant of agency policy and procedures regarding confidentiality of the consumers they serve.

Upon completion participants will be able to:

  • Define confidentiality
  • Understand the difference between confidentiality and privacy
  • Identify methods and best practices that protect consumer confidentiality
  • Understand the limits of confidentiality
  • Identify what constitutes a necessary breach in consumer confidentiality

Using Recovery Oriented Principles in Your Role Training
With a clear working definition of recovery, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), along with people in recovery, developed ten guiding principles of recovery. These principles were designed to help advance recovery opportunities and clarify concepts. This training provides peer and certified recovery support specialist with an in-depth look at each guiding principle, SAMHSA’s four dimensions that support life in recovery, as well as how to apply the guiding principles while serving in their role.

Upon completion of this training, peer and certified recovery support specialist will be able to:

  • Identify, define and develop a working knowledge of SAMHSA’s ten (10) guiding principles of recovery
  • Identify, define and develop a working knowledge of SAMHSA’s four (4) dimensions that support a life in recovery
  • Apply guiding principles while serving as peer and certified recovery support specialists

COSA-NCADD is an approved provider for continuing education through NAADAC, the association for addiction professionals, and the Alabama State Board of Social Work Examiners and the Alabama Alcohol and Drug Abuse Association. Contact hours are also available.

For further information:
Kwatasian Hunt, Director, Behavioral Health Prevention
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
828 Forest Avenue
Montgomery AL 36106


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