Unity On-Call Peer Support Specialist

On Call – PES Peer Support Specialist

Unity Center for Behavioral Health Peer Support Program

FolkTime, Inc.

Folktime’s PES Peer Support program offers peer support to individuals who are utilizing services at Unity Center for Behavioral Health’s Psychiatric Emergency Services, and can serve as a role model as someone who personally identifies as a peer and has traveled similar roads of distress, discomfort, and trauma. PES Peer Supports will promote a recovery oriented support system that focuses on hope, choice, personal responsibility, and self-determination and will promote this orientation in all aspects of the work. Engagement will support participants in developing recovery skills, building natural support systems, engaging in positive activities, and utilizing resources and support services in the community. PES Peer Supports will meet individuals within the Psychiatric Emergency Services, and will support individuals during their stay, with potential opportunity to provide short-term (within 7 days) support connecting to natural supports in the community at the discretion of the Unity Peer Program Supervisor. PES Peer Supports work with individuals will be driven by the participants recovery needs and interests, and support will occur in both group and individual settings.

The On-Call PES Peer Support Specialist will pick up shifts as requested by the Unity Peer Program Supervisor during PES Peer Programs operating hours to cover both planned and unplanned absences of regular program staff, and meet programmatic requirements for coverage in the PES.

Major Duties:

  • Act as a role model to persons in recovery to inspire hope and share life experiences as appropriate to the recovery process
  • Identify recovering person’s abilities, strengths and assets and assist them to recognize and use them
  • Identify barriers to full participation and focus on strategies to overcome them
  • Assist individuals in learning to recognize activations and signs of relapse and support the use the individual’s coping strategies as an alternative to more structured services
  • Co-facilitate meetings with teams of people in recovery to create a peer support and accountability culture.
  • Work successfully and collaboratively with professional staff while promoting the value added work of peer mentoring and client self-determination in the mental health services model. Actively participate in team meetings and promote a recovery perspective as a key component of all discussions
  • Encourage people to engage in community support programs, 12-step programs, and life enrichment activities
  • Complete all required documentation in a timely manner


  • Ability to work independently and as a member of a multi-disciplinary team.
  • Ability to develop trusting relationships with peers and staff
  • Be comfortable working with individuals actively experiencing symptoms of mental illness.
  • Good written and verbal communication skills
  • Competent with computers for word processing, internet, email and social media or able to learn these skills


  • Complete a 40-hour Oregon approved peer support training
  • Must meet the Oregon Administrative Rules definition of a peer: “any individual who has similar life experience, either as a current or former recipient of addictions or mental health services”
  • 1+ year experience as a peer support specialist or 1+ year experience working/volunteering in a helping profession
  • Must be able to pass a criminal background check and drug screening
  • Ability to report to work reliably and in a timely fashion.

Preferred but not required:

  • Certified Recovery Mentor
  • Bachelors or advanced degree
  • U.S. Military veteran
  • Experience working with individuals diagnosed with severe and persistent mental illness
  • Verbal fluency in Spanish

Salary and Benefits: Salary starts at $16.50 per hour. On-call positions are not eligible for benefits.

Shift: PES Peer Program operates between the hours of 10am and 7:30pm seven days a week, and on-call must have at least 24 hours of availability during days/hours identified as the highest priority for coverage.

Application Process: Please submit a cover letter and resume by email to bswango@folktime.org

In your cover letter, please address the following:

“Please explain how you would draw on your own experiences both personal and professional in order to support others who are experiencing mental health distress.”