I am looking for work

Hello everybody,

I am a survivor and a mental health advocate.

I live in Frederick MD.

Currently I live on SSI and I work part time at a wellness and recovery center. My monthly income is $810 and I spent most of this amount as rent.

It is difficult for me to do my advocacy work with such low income. Some discretionary funds are required for someone to be an advocate.

I cannot earn more then $60/ month, otherwise SSA will subtract it from my SSI. Because I live in chronic pain, I cannot work construction jobs for cash.

I would like to focus on being a better mental health advocate, spend less time in lines for free food and foraging for basic necessities.

I have digestive system problems and I cannot eat many kinds of food that are offered in the food bank.

The subjects that I am passionate about are:


  • Peers/peer recovery
  • ACE Study /ACE testing/ connection of ACE and zip code
  • Trauma psychology / Post Traumatic Growth
  • Jungian psychology
  • environment/ "environmental logotherapy"

My dream is to go to college to study Jungian psychology and psychoanalysis.

Currently I am writing another article for the newspaper about the mental health care system in Maryland and a professional journalist is advising me.

I am writing about Certified Peer Recovery Specialists (CPRS or CPS in some states) In some states CPRS services are medicaid-billable, allowing people with lived experience to be employed in facilities such as mental hospital diversionary respites where they help guide people out of crisis.

I would like to write about my "favorite topics" full time and make a liveable wage.

Thank you.

Original Post

Welcome, Vladimir!
I am wondering if one step towards your goal of writing - might be sharing "chapters" of your story here on ACEs Connection? You could gain experience, and start to have your name and writing out in a (members only) public space.  ACEs Connection is designed to be a safe place for people to share and be supported.  Maybe the lessons you learn along your journey could be useful to others who are facing similar difficulties?  

This may not be news to you, but I will share anyway just in case.  Maryland is establishing an advisory group to help certify Community Health Works.  This is in the step in a positive direction - when they are certified there will be more opportunities. Here is a LINK to their website.  Copied from their site.

House Bill 163 (Chapter 441) establishing the State Community Health Worker Advisory Committee to advise the Maryland Department of Health on matters relating to the certification and training of community health workers; requiring the Department to adopt regulations for accrediting certain training programs; requiring that certain written materials be in the preferred language of Advisory Committee members, as necessary; providing that, subject to an exception, a certified community health worker training program must be approved before operating in the State; etc. 

Wishing you all the best.  And, I look forward to maybe reading other blog posts from you in the future - no pressure - just lots of encouragement!

Hello Karen

I am writing a newspaper article. It is by far the most consuming 4 pages that I had written in my life.

My friend believes that I need to move to podcasts.

Writing is a very laborious process. The article still may not be published.

CPRS is similar to community health workers, yet falls under a different jurisdiction, as I understand.

Part of what I am writing is how difficult it was for fellow members of On Our Own to obtain their CPRS certifications. Many of them are waiting to take the final exam as work opportunities are not available.

Shall I become a certified community health worker?

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Karen Clemmer (ACEs Connection Staff)Abbie Sonntag