Adult Peer Services recently began three initiatives to facilitate services to JBS consumers amid the current COVID-19 pandemic and the precautions being taken to keep them safe.
Peer Services Program Coordinator Marie Holliday expressed the need to think “outside the box” to Charisse Parker, a Team Leader with Peer Services who reached out to various community agencies and organizations. What followed superseded their expectations! Donations of drawstring bags, toiletry items, journals, notebooks, coffee mugs, water bottles, books, bookmarks, and information on resources that can benefit the individuals we serve began to pour in. This led to the creation of “Peer Positivity Bags & Packets” which will be distributed to consumers as they enter Woodlawn as the first contact with Peer Services.
In addition, Friday, September 4, 2020, Peer Services began its’ first virtual support group with Woodlawn residents which has aptly been deemed the PEER PRESS group:
Prioritizing Engagement in Early Recovery
Preparing Regrouping Encouraging Salient Serenity
By engaging consumers during their initial 2 weeks in JBS Residential, based on previous experience and evidence-based data, an expected decrease in the number of consumers who voluntarily leave during that time period is likely. After the transition from Woodlawn, continued peer support services will be available as well.
Lastly, with over 1,000 books donated, “Peers Providing Paperbacks” has begun as well. Again seeing an unmet need as local libraries are closed and operational hours and access for those which remain open is limited, this service allows any staff to complete the PPP Book Request Form listing what genre book a consumer would like and have them dropped off or picked up at a designated location at the main office. Each request that is filled provides books, as well as bookmarks and magazines- depending on the consumer’s preference. The books become the property of the consumers and do not have to be returned.
We are SO excited to continue providing Peer Services during these trying times and are grateful for the support from everyone at JBS who helps make what we do so much easier!