Leaders inĀ peer recovery coaching

Funded by a capacity building grant from the Cook County Justice Advisory Council, Counseling First is leading a program to prevent violence through design and development of educational systems to encourage and enable certified local peer counseling for parole and probation clients. Our partners in this program are Governors State University, the Above and Beyond Family Recovery Center and the Community Support Advisory Council - North at Howard Area Community Center.

These certified local peer coaches will address substance use disorders and anger management directly in the neighborhoods. Specifically, these educational systems will include assessment tools, curriculum, certification procedures, supervision and IT systems to track outcomes.
The result will be opportunities for interested and qualified offenders to get certified as peer recovery coaches, creating jobs for neighbors to help neighbors to recover, enabling local pockets of services that directly address issues of substance abuse and anger on the ground, thereby preventing violence.
Now is time to launch ways for people to get certified as a peer recovery coach in his or her local neighborhood across Cook County. As society increasingly recognizes the value of probation, supervision and diversion in lieu of incarceration, Cook County has an opportunity to support development of local peer coaches for substance abuse and anger management in urban communities. These local peers can walk the walk, talk the talk and, with well-designed supports and systems, serve as powerful allies in the struggle to prevent violence in Cook County.