Classes are more rigid in their structure; a conversation allows us to be more flexible. Another reason is that Ripple members do not act as teachers or instructors. We see ourselves playing the role of a facilitator guiding the conversation just enough so it does not stray too far from the intended topics being discussed.
Our current Community Conversation subjects are:
Power of the Peer: This conversation talks about how important peers in recovery are. More and more we see a shift in traditional treatment providers using Recovery Support Specialists. Currently, there are over 1000 certified peers in Connecticut thanks to the educational experience offered through Advocacy Unlimited. Peers in our community are also involved with legislative advocacy and often appear in person to testify at the Legislative Office Building in Hartford. The Power of the Peer conversation is a good way for those in recovery to find their voice and to begin exploring the opportunities they will have to share their experiences. Whether they decide to become more active in the peer community or learn more about the resources that can benefit them and their lives, everyone walks away with something.
If they’re talking there’s time: In October of 2012, the World Health Organization called depression a global crisis. On average we lose 16 veterans and 4 active-duty personnel/reservists a day to suicide. In a March 2018 article USA Today reported the suicide rate for children and teens between the ages of 10 and 17 was up an average of 73 percent from 2006 to 2016. USA Today also reported in April of 2018 that more officers and firefighters died of suicide than line-of-duty deaths in 2017.
This is preventable! We know that suicide effects everyone, it does not discriminate. We need to break down the walls that stigma has build up around us and pull these people out from the shadows. Above all else we need to show those in crisis that they are not alone.
This Conversation draws from lived experience and shared stories, if you host “If they’re talking there’s time” at your location please have a few staff members available. It is possible that some people can become overwhelmed by the subject matter and might need a break and sit with someone.
Helping the Healers: People who are driven to help others and make a difference sometimes lose sight of what is right in front of them, their health and wellbeing. Whether you’re a peer in recovery working in the mental health and addiction services system or a professional clinician, it is important to remember to take time for ourselves. This conversation talks about what is needed to maintain a healthy balance between work and relaxation. Burnout is real, and it can happen to everyone, it is possible to work shorter hours and be more productive. When you are well rested and better focused, you will work more efficiently. By coming together, sharing ideas and coping skills, it is our hope we all leave better prepared for tomorrow.
If you or someone in your organization would like to host a Community Conversation at your location, please contact us here. Put “Conversation” in the subject line. If you have an idea for a topic feel free to suggest it to us, we’ll do the research and put together an outline and be happy to work with you to facilitate it for your group.