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SOAR Webinar: Peer Support Specialists: A Critical Component for SOAR Programs

On this webinar, held on January 25, 2022, panelists shared best practice examples on how they have incorporated their lived expertise into their SOAR work.

Date and Time:


Webinar Recording


From outreach case managers to SOAR State Team Leads, Peer Support Specialists have been providing critical services to their SOAR programs by using their professional experience and lived expertise to connect with SOAR applicants since we began in 2005. The SAMHSA SOAR TA Center recognizes the value of lived expertise in the benefits acquisition process and in leadership roles. For instance, there are 126+ SOAR trained case workers who identify as “Peers” or as “Individuals in Recovery.” We know these staff serve in a variety of roles using their shared experiences to assist others with finding financial stability in their recovery journey as well. 

On this webinar, panelists will share best practice examples on how they have incorporated their lived expertise into their SOAR work. You will learn more about “Peer Support Services” as an evidence-based model of care and how this model has been shown to be highly effective within SOAR initiatives throughout the country. Panelists will share strategies for providing effective supervision and training for peer staff that covers the specific skills and tasks required in their roles, such as being willing to share your own recovery story as needed to support engagement and another’s recovery journey. Presentations will also include discussion of opportunities to engage and promote peers into leadership positions, how agencies can utilize peers innovatively, and examples of how SOAR can be integrated within state peer state certification processes.

Read the SAMHSA SOAR TA Center Issue Brief, Integrating SOAR with Peer Certifications. 

What you will learn:

  • The role of Peer Support Services in SOAR programs
  • Best practices for implementing Peer Support Services within your SOAR program
  • How Peer Support Specialists are incorporating their lived experience and expertise into their SOAR work to help others and themselves in their recovery journeys


  • Sametra Polkah-Toe, LMHC, NYCPS, Project Associate, SAMHSA SOAR TA Center, Delmar, New York.
  • Sean Wright, CPC, Community Outreach Director, Capital Recovery Center, Olympia, Washington
  • Sara Smith, PATH Outreach Specialist, Capital Recovery Center, Olympia, Washington
  • Meta Hogan, Homeless Outreach Stabilization Program Manager, Washington State Health Care Authority, Olympia, Washington
  • William Wall, PhD, CRPS, Forensic Peer Specialist, Meridian Behavioral Healthcare, Gainesville, Florida
  • Tanisha Murdaugh, CRPS, Certified Recovery Peer Specialist, Broward House, Ft Lauderdale, Florida
  • Veronica Delgado, CPSW, CHW, Certified Peer Support Specialist and Certified Community Healthcare Worker, Clinical Operations, Presbyterian Health Plan, Las Cruces, New Mexico


Available Files
Attachment Size
Slide Presentation 3.23 MB
Presenter Bios 109.95 KB