Second Story is a Peer Respite located in Santa Cruz, CA. This short-stay sleeps six house was established in 2010 through a federal grant to evaluate peer support services. Mad in America sat down with members of the Second Story community to discuss the origins of the house, starting with Loren Mosher’s Soteria project and the integration of peer support. Staffed entirely by individuals with lived experience of mental health issues, trauma, or extreme states, the house “provides an opportunity to experience what change feels like, and to learn new responses through relationships with each other” for Santa Cruz County mental health clients. This is first in a series that will chronicle the development of alternative approaches such as peer respites and Open Dialogue in America.
Mad in America hosts blogs by a diverse group of writers. These posts are designed to serve as a public forum for a discussion—broadly speaking—of psychiatry and its treatments. The opinions expressed are the writers’ own.