Training and Certification

State by State Database
“How do I Become a Peer Specialist?”

Doors to Wellbeing Peer Database

Peer Specialist Training and Certification - National Overview 2016

 If you are seeking certification please check the requirements in your state first!

If you’re looking for peer support provider training, NAPS encourages you to contact recognized, respected, and proven training organizations. While NAPS does not endorse any one peer support provider training organization, we strongly urge peer supporters or those interested in becoming peer supporters to obtain training from a reputable organization. Many of the organizations listed below also offer advanced level, refresher, and continuing education for peer support providers. 

Peer Support Training Providers
(Listed in alphabetical order)

Disclaimer: iNAPS does not approve or endorse any training or credentialing program over any other at this time. Any statement or implication that we “approve” or “endorse” a particular credential is simply not true.

Academy of Peer Services (Online) | New York State Certification An on-demand, online training and testing website for the New York State Peer Specialist Certification. Free of charge to residents of New York State. Free and open to the public. For out of state certification, visit the New York Peer Specialist Certification Board

Appalachian Consulting Group (ACG)

The Appalachian Consulting Group trains and consults in health and behavioral health to promote a national workforce of peer specialists who call forth the potential within each individual to self-manage a healthy life with meaning and purpose.

Georgia’s Division of Mental Health pioneered Medicaid-billable peer support services in 1999 in partnership with ACG and the Georgia Mental Health Consumer Network (GMHCN). Many certified peer specialist training programs have been based on this groundbreaking work.



Colorado Peer and Family Specialist Credential

In 2016, a coalition of Colorado organizations, government agencies and peers, created the Colorado Peer and Family Specialist Certification (CPFS).

 Consumers as Providers Training Program (CAP) University of Kansas

University of Kansas | Beth Oswald, Coordinator [email protected]

CAPis a Kansas Certified Peer Specialist Training Program that consists of 18 weeks classroom instruction and Educational Support Group. The CAP Training partners with mental health agencies across the state of Kansas, Kansas universities and community colleges and social service and mental health agencies. Students do not receive college credit for the course and are not guaranteed a job upon completion of the course, however; research conducted with the program demonstrates that over half of the students who complete the course find employment and a third of graduates continue their education following the class.
1545 Lilac Lane Lawrence, KS 66044
(877) 458-6804 (USA toll-free)

Copeland Center for Wellness and Recovery (WRAP Certification)

The Copeland Center transforms lives by promoting wellness, recovery, and peer support through training, technical assistance, and advocacy. We are the international leaders of the Wellness Recovery Action Plan® and other works developed by Dr. Mary Ellen Copeland. WRAP is the foundation for many peer specialist and peer support training certification programs.

Copeland Center Website:
WRAP Website:

Depression Bipolar Support Alliance (DBSA)

DBSA promotes wellness and recovery through engaging and high-quality training and consultation services. These services are delivered from the perspective of people with lived experiences in recovery, and in partnership with those who seek to support us. (DBSA currently offers VA-approved peer specialist training.)

Douglas Hulst:  Peer Specialist Workforce Development Program Manager:  [email protected]

 Training Information:


eCPR certification provides a thoughtful discussion of the values and the primary components of eCPR: C = Connection, P = emPowering, and R = Revitalizing.

For more information:

For a description of the program:

Jordan Peer Recovery

Peer Specialist Certification: JPR is an approved education provider by NAADAC, The Association of Addiction Professionals, providing all training required for the National Certified Peer Recovery Support Specialist (NCPRSS) credential in every state. JPR is also IC&RC certified and is a state-board certified training in over 25 states. 


Contact: [email protected]

Institute for Recovery and Community Integration

The Institute for Recovery and Community Integration works to introduce and advance communities’ understanding of recovery and community integration as the catalyst for transforming individual lives, communities, and all levels of behavioral health systems in a culturally competent manner.

Jean Whitecraft: [email protected]

Peer Zone, (Australia, New Zealand, Canada… and growing)

PeerZone is a series of three hour peer led workshops in mental health and addiction where people explore recovery and whole of life wellbeing.

We’ve developed twenty workshops within five themes:

  • Understanding ourselves
  • Empowering ourselves
  • Working on our wellbeing
  • Connecting to the world
  • Exploring our unique identities

PeerZone works on three levels for  participants:

  • It invites them to rebuild a more positive story of their lives.
  • It offers tools for whole of life wellbeing.
  • It creates a community of mutual support.

PeerZone works on three levels for services:

  • It’s a service innovation for organisations that invest in it.
  • It’s a practice tool and support structure for workers with lived experience who facilitate it.
  • It’s a personal development opportunity for service users who participate in it.



 Recovery Innovations (Recovery Opportunity Center)
Arizona, California, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Washington, Delaware, and New Zealand

Our mission is to create opportunities and environments that empower people to recover, to succeed in accomplishing their goals, and to reconnect to themselves, others, and meaning and purpose in life.

Click here to learn more about the Advanced Peer Specialist Training (Online)
602-636-4444 | 866-481-5362 (toll free)  Website:

Recovery to Practice

A 32-hour blended continuing education experience designed for experience peer support providers (with a minimum of one year of work or volunteer experience). The training was developed by iNAPS in partnership with the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance (DBSA) under the SAMHSA-funded Recovery to Practice project.

To learn more about Recovery to Practice visit:

Recovery University (Connecticut) 

Recovery University is a 60-hour advanced training and certification program funded in part by the CT Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services for persons in recovery from mental health or co-occurring disorders. It is the only state authorized program to certify individuals as meeting the requirements of Certification for Recovery Support Specialist. Upon successful completion of the course and the certification exam, graduates will be state certified as Recovery Support Specialists, Peer Delivered Services.

The National Council – Training Trauma-Informed Peers

More than 90% of persons serviced by behavioral health organizations have a history of trauma, which can affect their ability to form relationships, keep a job, or live in stable housing. We can’t offer effective healthcare and improve outcomes unless we factor in trauma’s impact. By addressing trauma, organizations improve the quality and impact of behavioral health services, increasing safety for all, reduce no-shows, enhance client engagement, and avoid staff burnout and turnover.

The consumer voice plays an influential role in decision-making throughout most behavioral healthcare organizations – whether it is through committees, task forces, work groups, panels, councils, or advisory and agency boards. Peer support specialists are poised to support the voice, choice, and advocacy of those individuals, as well as to develop safe and healing relationships with people who have experienced trauma. In fact, these specialists are a new, integral part of most progressive organizations, and they consistently ask for additional training — especially around trauma because of their ability to build a bridge between those receiving services and those providing services.

The National Council now has a two-day training for up to 30 peers on trauma’s impact across the lifespan. Click the link below to learn more about this new and effective training.

View Training Trauma-informed Peers program overview

Sponsored by

The Transformation Center (Massachusetts) 

In 2004, responding to decades of social change work by people with lived experience of mental health diagnosis and/or extreme emotional states, the Massachusetts Department of Mental Health received Medicaid funding to support the beginnings of a statewide, peer-operated “Recovery Center for Excellence.” This is now called The Transformation Center.

The Transformation Center’s role is to “water the roots” of the movement and to join efforts with all who forward the goal of compassionate communities that value people. Our source of expertise is innovation driven by those who are impacted with suffering and discrimination. Our logo is inspired by the widely known allegory on collaboration “Lessons from the Geese” (unknown origin) which inspires a world where people are as wise as geese, where leadership is shared, and where we all stay focused on Vision and Mission with “eyes on the prize.”

To learn more about the Transformation Center, visit: 

Training Providers recommended through selected state certification programs:

Disclaimer: Each state has different certification requirements. Training vendors approved in one state may not be approved in all states. Be sure to check with your state certification authority prior to contracting for a peer specialist certification training.

North Carolina Approved Training Organizations:

Arizona Training Organization (approved for portions of Arizona):

Wisconsin Peer Employment Initiative Recognized Peer Resources and Training–resources.html