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Peer Support

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As a Veteran who has made the transition to civilian life, you know how difficult it can be—especially when dealing with mental health challenges or issues such as depression or PTSD.

It can be a tough road, and not everyone has the ability to navigate it successfully. But you know from personal experience that with the right tools and resources, along with a stellar support system, building a better life can be achieved.

And as a VA Peer Specialist or Peer Support Apprentice, you can share your knowledge and experience with other Veterans, so that they, too, may learn to lead the lives they deserve. Click here to apply for positions today.

Peer Specialist

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A Peer Specialist is a person with a mental health and/or co-occurring condition, who has been trained and certified to help others with these conditions, identify and achieve specific life and recovery goals.

A Peer Specialist is a person who is actively engaged in his/her own recovery, and who volunteers or is hired to provide peer support services to others engaged in mental health treatment.

Peer Support Apprentice

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A Peer Support Apprentice meets all of the requirements of Peer Support Specialists, except they are not certified. That means Peer Support Apprentices also have a mental health and/or co-occurring condition, and have real world experience in helping others deal with their issues.

Peer Support Apprentices are also adept at helping Veterans identify the tools and resources necessary to live richer, fuller lives — and have their certification paid for by VA during their first year of employment.

Frequently Asked Questions
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Q: What do Peer Specialists do in their jobs?

A: Peer Specialists serve as role models by sharing their personal recovery stories, showing that recovery from mental illness is possible. They teach goal setting, problem solving, symptom management skills and a variety of recovery tools.
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Q. Why is VA hiring so many Peer Specialists now?

A: VA has recognized the value and importance of Veterans being able to see recovery taking place and have a fellow Veteran help them navigate the VA system for quite some time.
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Q. Will other staff and Veterans know that I have a mental health condition if I am a Peer Specialist?

A: Yes. Being a Peer Specialist means that an individual has accepted their mental health condition, and dealt with the stigma that society imposes on individuals with disabilities.
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