At the beginning of July, the first cohort of Damascus Way staff underwent 46 hours of intense, peer recovery training as part of our MCB approved curriculum. The course, facilitated by our own Associate Director of Recovery & Mental Health Services, Jacob Lusk, provided 30 hours of peer recovery training and 16 hours of ethics curriculum designed to inform and educate staff members the training requirements for Certified Peer Recovery Specialists (CPRS) in the State of Minnesota. The course focused on informing participants in recovery based support strategies that assist individuals in trauma-awareness and the best practices for peer to peer services.

Key members of our team, ranging from shift coordinators, to individuals in organizational leadership had the privilege of taking part in the first cohort in our School of Peer Recovery. which took place at our new reentry house in Prior Lake! Over the course of six consecutive days, staff members gathered together to learn, discuss and reflect on the nature and breadth of peer support services. Facilitator Jacob Lusk said the following about the first cohort:

“It was a privilege to train our Damascus Way team of servants in the principles and processes surrounding Peer Recovery Services. I was humbled by the experience and dedication of the class participants. In my time training and working as a peer recovery specialist I have never seen the wealth of knowledge and wisdom in serving people in the community from a group of people.”

Participant and long-time Golden Valley Reentry Coordinator Jonathan Dumas shared his thoughts as well:

“First of all, I would like to thank Jacob Lusk for all of his hard work and his training style. His patience and the  atmosphere made it easy for everyone to voice some good points to better serve the demographic in our programs. The six days that we were together was a much needed boost to lead Damascus Way in the direction that God is taking us.”

We celebrate the completion of training for this first cohort and look forward to training many more of our staff in peer support services. To learn more about our School of Peer Recovery, click here.