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Using the unique power of peer supports to enhance recovery and self-empowerment informs CAPS, a peer-run organization serving adults in New York’s capital region recovering from mental illnesses.

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This isn't me but this is what my writing anxiety sometimes looks like.I have to admit something. I often feel totally inadequate to do any writing for this website. There. I said it. What I mean is that whenever I sit down to write something I get freaked. Nervous. Sweaty. I feel I have no ability to write anything anyone will want to read. I worry about what people will think of what I write. I think I don't have anything worth saying. Even though I consider myself a good writer, I have spent a lifetime panicking whenever I have to start writing something. I used to say, when I was in college, that I would rather clean the toilet than start writing.

Category: Board Blog

Sean welcoming me to the club.Wow! I spent the afternoon of May 10, 2012, in CDIC taking pictures for this website. It was a remarkable experience of involvement, interaction, music, dancing, laughing, and helping me with pictures. It was easy and delightful to feel the energy and pride of so many CDIC members and staff. I saw real peer support going on practically everywhere.
Two friends.I will be taking more pictures soon and can hardly wait to get there. As a board member, I've seen the club in action but have never experienced its particular wonderfulness in such a personal way before. I'd like to thank everyone for their gracious help.
I am so looking forward to working with CDIC members on this website on an ongoing basis. More about that later.

Category: Board Blog

Hi, my name is Stacy Carter. I'm glad to be one of the newest members of the CAPS Board. My past peer experiences include being a member of Fountain House  in NYC, being the ACCAB board chairman, working as a peer specialist. I am presently working with NYAPRS as a peer bridger. I look forward to working with CAPS as a board member and hope to became a valuable member of the board.

Category: Board Blog

Albany County Legislature buildingEarlier this year, fellow board member Stacy Carter and I went to the Albany County Legislature. Our purpose was to lay out CAP's expectations for a new Director of the Albany County Department of Mental Health. At the time, Dr. Stephen J. Giordano was the Acting Director. Dr. Giordano has been supportive of peer services and we wanted him to be the Director.

Category: Board Blog

Secretary

David Le Vine, LMSW

Quality Assurance and Utilization Review Specialist, Renesselaer Co. Dept. of Mental Health

Schoharie Hears About CAPS

In October, 2010, I spoke in Schoharie County to service providers from the local mental health clinic there, the County DSS, and representatives from RSS. I had been invited to speak about the successes of people moving from participation in public mental health programs to competitive employment as someone who has worked in the public mental health system since 1995. A significant part of my presentation covered what I had been part of as Director of the Consumer Drop-In Center from 1997-2001.

I spoke about the sense of community that we have that makes people feel connected and supported to peers in recovery. I also mentioned the variegated cultural backgrounds of members of CDIC, the fact that differences are accepted and that those differences make the Center welcoming to everyone. I mentioned the people that I knew who had secured competitive employment in the community but yet kept coming back to CDIC to reconnect with friends. In addition, CAPS in general has always been a place that has given people many second chances. People are not turned away because of a bad moment or bad day. We have always understood that everyone makes mistakes.

CAPS has also always been an agency in which the employees go a little further than is expected to assist others. The employees have always expanded their job roles in an attempt to facilitate success for those individuals who have received services from our agency. We have always been very person-centered. In other words, we always put the goals of the people whom we serve first as a priority.

All of the above is not to say that we have not had our problems at CAPS. The agency has weathered some tough times but we continue to survive. In fact, I would say that after a tough few years we are showing marked improvements in financial health, organization, quality of services, and leadership.

I think that we all should take this time during May is Mental Health Month to reflect on what this agency has always stood for and what we hope for CAPS for the future. We are making our future as we speak, and as a peer-run agency it is important that we all take on responsibility for positive change. We will be what we make it.

Category: Board Blog

I've never, I don't think, seen Jack Bauer stop to eat or do laundry. I wish I had his abilities to get so much done. Not to knock things about or blow things up, however satisfying that may be, but to get so much done in 24 hours. I have a sneaking suspicion that there are actually more than 24 hours in Bauer's days. This would, of course, be magic. I’m not sure how that would work for me as my relationship with magic is tenuous.

Category: Board Blog

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Contact Details

Capital Area Peer Services
354 Central Avenue
Albany, NY 12208-2311

P 518.427.5056
F 518.427.5059

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Capital Area Peer Services
354 Central Ave.
Albany, NY 12208-2311

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