At our peer support planning meeting on Saturday we decided to create a celebration for peer specialists to celebrate the growth of our occupation. The number of certified peer specialists throughout Wisconsin and Milwaukee in particular has increased the likelihood that people who need mental health assistance will encounter a person who in some way shares their challenges. At the same time the variety of peer specialists has increased. When I began working with Our Space many years ago, I knew most of the other peer specialists. For the next several years, many peer specialists traced their roots back to Our Space. They were trained by the much admired Carmen who has moved on. Now there are people who were trained at La Causa. There are peer specialists working with veterans at Dry hootch which has grown exponentially. If you receive services at a case management agency, you might meet a peer specialist. And it has become increasingly important for peer specialists to pass a state administered certification test.
With all of these changes underway, we thought it would be helpful to call for a barbecue with music and fun at Dry hootch National, which is at 4801 W. National Avenue. There is a band that plays at Dry Hootch on Friday nights and they will be performing at our event on April 25 which will run from 2 until 7 pm. It will be a good time and the beginning of our efforts to unite peer specialists in Milwaukee. And who doesn’t like a party?