LIFT Peer Support Apprenticeship


Application Deadline: October 4th, 2019
Selection Announcements: October 28th, 2019
Program Start Date: November 4th, 2019


LIFT is an equal-opportunity apprenticeship program for new NC Certified Peer Support Specialists looking to gain experience working in the North Carolina behavioral health system while promoting recovery and cultivating hope. Apprenticing NCCPSSs will have the opportunity to work directly with MHG peers by providing one-on-one sessions, facilitating Wellness Academy or Compeer classes, and facilitating/co-facilitating support groups. Created to provide a structured work environment which supplements certification requirements for new peer support specialists, the LIFT program provides apprentices with experience working in an office environment, using common tools like Microsoft Office and Outlook, documenting and maintaining case files, and managing their own mental health while providing support to others.

As part of the LIFT program, apprentices will undergo training and receive certifications for Mental Health First Aid and QPR Suicide Prevention, and have the opportunity to receive certification as a WRAP Facilitator. A successful LIFT apprentice will become skilled at supporting others through various means, not limited to:

  • Providing assistance to peers in the management of mental health challenges.
  • Developing positive relationships that provide social and emotional support.
  • Assisting peers in linking to community resources and services.
  • Helping to aid in the development of increased independence.
  • Promoting knowledge and adherence to SAMHSA recovery principles.

Program Details

Application Requirements

  • Applicants must be currently certified as NC Certified Peer Support Specialists; certification must be up to date and dated 2016 or later. Applicants should be able to provide a copy of the certificate indicating the completion of a Division Approved Peer Support Specialist training. Visit UNC’s NC Peer Support Specialist Certification Site for details.
  • Applicants must have completed WRAP training within the past 2 years and have a current WRAP plan they are following.
  • Applicants must be able to commit to a minimum of 10 hours weekly for 6 months, mostly to be served during MHG office hours with some evening/weekend obligations for support group facilitation.
  • Applicants must be 18 years or older.
  • Applicants must have lived experiences in recovery from a significant mental health challenge or substance use disorder.
  • Applicants must have been in recovery for at least one year.
  • Applicants must have at least a high school diploma or equivalent.
  • Applicants must provide at least 2 references using the references form provided in the application packet.
  • Applicants must understand that the apprenticeship is an unpaid position.
  • Applicants must have stable transportation and lines of communication.

Responsibilities and Expectations

  • Apprentices will be required to commit to a minimum of 10 hours weekly for on-site work based learning assignments determined by program directors.
  • Apprentices will be assigned a case load of at least two peers after evaluations determine independent peer sessions appropriate. 
  • Apprentices will be required to document person centered plans with peers.
  • Apprentices will be required to facilitate/co-facilitate at least 1 support group and/or psychoeducational peer-led class, activity, or workshop.
  • Apprentices must exemplify a healthy recovery and adhere to the Code of Ethics as well as MHG policies and procedures at all times.
  • Apprentices will be subject to periodic bi-weekly performance evaluations, monthly evaluations, self-evaluations, peer evaluations, and group evaluations.
  • Apprentices will be subject to a 3-month and 6-month cumulative review completed by the program directors.

Compensation 

This is an unpaid volunteer position. Apprentices will receive work experience and opportunities to receive free training and certification for Mental Health First Aid and QPR Suicide Prevention as well as WRAP Facilitator certification. Upon completion of the program, apprentices will receive references for employment and up to 25 CEUs (continuing education credits) for NCCPSS re-certification.