Wednesday, October 20, 2021

Comments by rigelf

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  • Thank you Daniel,
    I have been curious about Soteria Alaska since I heard about it. I find myself struggling with many of the same challanges you write about at Second Story House, Santa Cruz, CA. We were designed to work with “Santa Cruz County System of Care Mental Health Clients”. With the premise that Peer Supporters trained in IPS could help people who stay with us for up to 13 nights reduce their use of traditional services, and thus reduce cost.
    What I see after a year and a half, is a vibrant collabrotive house full of a combination of guests (residents), volunteers, vistors (previous guests and friends/family of current guests), and peer support workers. I don’t know what the data will show when we get the results, but I do know that most people who have been involved with the project would say that it was an incredibly positive experience, if sometimes a little messy, a little “who works here and who is staying here” confusion. Always a delicate balance of what a paid workers role is, and what a guests role is. An oppurtunity for conversation, hopefully while doing dishes.

    There have also been a few people who were really uncomfortable with the “non-professional” atmosphere where the expectation is that everyone is a responsible adult looking to learn something.
    As Daniel stated above there are people who are so used to the “helper/helpee” role that anything else is seemingly unimaginable.
    As peer supporters striving to impliment this philosophy we are often challanged by the degree that we are required to “care take” people. How do you have a mutually responsible relationship with someone when you are expected to follow through for them if they don’t follow through. I look forward to reading more about others’ experiences as well as sharing mine on this site.
    Thanks for giving us a glimpse.