Lived Experience Academy Graduates
On November 17th, members of the Lived Experience Academy graduated after spending six weeks learning the ins and outs of San Mateo County’s BHRS division and building their own confidence with public speaking and advocacy techniques. These graduates will now venture forth and serve on the various boards and commissions associated with BHRS: Quality Improvement Committee, Suicide Prevention Committee, Mental Health Substance Abuse Recovery Commission, CSA Advisory Boards, Workforce Development and Education Committee, Housing operations Program, etc.
The members of the Lived Experience Academy, in addition to serving on these boards and commissions, will also be giving presentations to provide a needed link to creating a team approach in reaching all those working within BHRS. These presentations will inform the providers, both clinical and administrative, in knowing how important their work is and they see first hand how their duties definitely improve the lives of those who seek help from BHRS.
I have enjoyed working with the SMC Lived Experience Academy. I was given a six-month contract with SMC to assist with their training of the Lived Experience Academy and have enjoyed working along with such wonderful speakers and facilitating at the various venues. I began a speaker’s bureau in 1990 and have helped many speakers to tell their story in over 2600 public presentations to date with the Stamp Out Stigma program.