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Advocacy Unlimited - Recovery and advocacy education for people with mental health and/or addiction issuesAdvocacy Unlimited, Inc. - Comprehensive education in recovery and advocacy skills for people in recovery from mental health and/or addiction issues

Resource Center

Resource Library

Library books

Bullet point Library Index:  

Bullet point Many of these resources are links to other websites and will open in a new browser window.


Ability Beyond

Ability Beyond LogoFor over 60 years, Ability Beyond (formerly Ability Beyond Disability) has led the field in supporting people with disabilities, by providing person-centered, cutting-edge, and cost-effective services. We offer one of the most comprehensive systems of community-based support for people with disabilities in the Northeast, helping more than 2,400 people across two states to overcome a variety of challenges. It is through our innovative community job training and placement, supported living, and recreational and educational opportunities that we are able to help the individuals we serve to live full and rewarding lives.

Ability Beyond employment services help train people to work and then help them secure and maintain a job. Our 30-year track record of success in job training and placement has helped thousands of people to gain meaningful employment in the community and helped hundreds of businesses prosper by gaining dedicated, quality employees. For more info, see Employment Resources from Ability Beyond.

Addictions Help/Resources - Connecticut

Resources in Connecticut for help and treatment with addictions (these are links to external sites and will open in a new browser window).

Alcoholics Anonymous Connecticut (Area 11)
Connecticut Community for Addiction Recovery (CCAR)
Easy-to-Read Drug Facts (from the National Institute on Drug Abuse)

This easy-to-read website talks about drug abuse, addiction, and treatment. It has pictures and videos to help readers understand the text. The website also can read each page out loud. The pages are easy to print out to share with people who do not have computers. This website does not show pictures of drugs or drug use, as such pictures can cause problems for people who are addicted to drugs.

• Gambling Help - See Gambling Help in Connecticut
Narcotics Anonymous (Connecticut Region)
Connecticut Inpatient Drug Rehab Facilities - A comprehensive guide to Connecticut rehab treatment facilities (from Rehabs.com)
SAMHSA - Behavioral Health Treatment Services Locator
Treatment Centers in Connecticut (from TreatmentCenters.net)
Valley Substance Abuse Action Council (VSAAC)

BHcare's VSAAC offers a variety of interactive workshops and presentations for youth and adults, as well as resource materials, curriculums, training programs, referrals, and other information about drug abuse, alcohol, and tobacco that can help parents, children, and the community become better aware and equipped to combat the intrusion of these harmful substances in our daily lives.

Resources for Youth:

Teen Challenge New England - Residential drug recovery program for teens.

The Next Right Thing - Community-based substance abuse and mental health treatment for adolescents ages 16-23 and their families.

Connecticut Turning to Youth and Families (CTYF) - Prevention, treatment and recovery support services for youth and families.

The Courage To Speak Foundation, Inc. - Empowering youth to be drug free through fostering education and open communication.

R.E.A.C.H. OUT Project - The R.E.A.C.H. OUT Project is a nonprofit organization that provides peer-mentor support to youth and families struggling with behavioral, substance use, and/or mental health disorders. It was established to build an organization of dedicated community members whose desire is to provide advocacy, awareness, education, and support to youth and families around addiction, recovery, prevention, and at-risk behavior. Contact them at info@reachoutprojectinc.org

Northeast Communities Against Substance Abuse - The principal mission of Northeast Communities Against Substance Abuse (NECASA) is to prevent substance abuse in the youth population within the twenty-one towns covered by the coalition. The ultimate goal of NECASA is to reduce substance abuse in Northeast Connecticut.

Advance Directives

Connecticut specific information regarding Advance Directives with links to other prominent Advance Directives resources.

Anti-Discrimination and Anti-Stigma Resources

Links to resources dealing with anti-discrimination and providing help and education about the myths, misconceptions, and bias surrounding mental illness.

Resources include the BringChangetoMind web resource created by Glenn Close, the Child and Adolescent Bipolar Foundation (CABF), Fountain House, and Garen and Shari Staglin of the International Mental Health Research Organization (IMHRO) for help in dealing with mental health stigma, misconceptions, and bias. The idea of a national anti-stigma campaign was born of a partnership between Glenn Close and Fountain House, where Glenn volunteered in order to learn about mental illness, which both her sister Jessie Close and nephew Calen Pick live with.

Also included is "No Kidding, Me Too!"  Founded by actor Joey Pantoliano, well-known for his role in the HBO series The Sopranos, "No Kidding, Me Too!" is a nonprofit public charity whose purpose is to remove the stigma attached to mental illness (brain dis-ease, or "BD") through education and the breaking down of societal barriers. Their goal is to empower those with BD to admit their illness, seek treatment, and become even greater members of society.

Discrimination: A Roadblock to Recovery - An exhibit of photographs depicting types of discrimination experienced by people with mental health and/or substance use disorders.
Let's Call Stigma What It Is – Prejudice and Discrimination - There's a lot of talk in the mental health community around stigma. Stigma, stigma, stigma. It seems to be an advocate's favorite word. And it is both a powerful and appropriate word in the case of mental illness. Stigma is, “a mark of disgrace or infamy, a stain or reproach,” and that's exactly how many people treat mental illness. They treat it as if it stains any person it touches. But the problem with this really isn't the stigma per se, it's more the acts of what stigma causesacts of prejudice and discrimination. Right in line with racism and sexism, we have "mentalism."read more
The Anti-Stigma Project - From On Our Own of Maryland, Inc. The consequences of stigmatizing attitudes and behaviors are quite tangibleand destructive"You finally decide to get help and then you're punished for it, pigeonholed into a diagnosis, shamed, labeled, and discriminated against for life. The stigma can be worse than the illness."
I'm Not Ashamed - Spreading the message that mental heath conditions are nothing to be ashamed of! They are not a choice, character flaw, or a weakness. We are helping end the harmful stigma associated with mental heath conditions and advocating for better and more accessible healthcare. Tweet @teamnotashamed.
Active Minds - Active Minds is a national 501(c)3 organization that empowers students to speak openly about mental health in order to educate others and encourage help-seeking. We are changing the culture on campuses and in the community by providing information, leadership opportunities and advocacy training to the next generation. Through campus-wide events and national programs, Active Minds aims to remove the stigma that surrounds mental health issues, and create a comfortable environment for an open conversation about mental health issues on campuses nationwide.
NØStigmas - The mission of NoStigmas is to raise awareness and erase the stigmas of suicide and mental illness by sharing stories of hope and inspiration from those touched by suicide and mental illness and educating the general public about mental health issues. NoStigmas began in 2007 as a grassroots movement to unify those touched by suicide and mental illness with the common knowledge that they are not alone and to change the public's generally negative perception of those touched by suicide and mental illness.
Not Without UsVideo - By Mental Health Peer Connection and Sam Avery, Not Without Us is a film de-constructing the complex issues at the heart of one of the most harmful and prevalent forms of discrimination in America - the chronic abuse and stigmatization of people labeled mentally ill. Watch what happens when this group of people, often portrayed as a problem to be solved by society, bands together to stand up for their rights by redefining the nature of the problem and reclaiming their status as integral members of society.
Stand Up for Mental Health CampaignStand Up For Mental Health Campaign - Dedicated to eliminating the stigma of mental illness, including self-stigma, and letting others know that talking about mental health openly is a good thing. Like other groups throughout history, people with a mental illness have been marginalized, discriminated against, and made to feel like second class citizens. Others refused to tolerate it, why should you?  PointerJoin the Campaign!
Stigma: Language Matters - Adapted from SAMHSA's Center for Mental Health Services and "Removing Bias in Language: Disabilities," originally from the APA Style Manual, now available on the Barstow Community College Tutorial Center website.
Respectful Disability Language - Links to resources covering respectful disability language.

Center for Mental Health Services (CMHS)

The Center for Mental Health Services leads federal efforts to promote the prevention and treatment of mental disorders. Congress created CMHS to bring new hope to adults who have serious mental illness and children with emotional disorders.

College Resources for Persons with Disabilities

See Higher Education Resources for Persons with Disabilities.

Connecticut Clubhouses and Social Clubs

Here you'll find a listing of Connecticut Clubhouses and Social Clubs. You can locate a club by either city or clubhouse name.

Connecticut Coalition Against Domestic Violence

CCADV is comprised of 18 programs throughout Connecticut. These programs provide services to victims of domestic violence. Their services are confidential, and available to all individuals regardless of age, race, religion, sexual preference, class, or physical ability. They offer safety planning, advocacy, information, referrals, counseling, support groups and emergency shelter. You can be immediately connected with a program in your area by calling our toll free domestic violence toll free hotline 1-888-774-2900.

Connecticut Crisis Services

This is a link to the CT Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services' comprehensive list of crisis centers. Crisis centers are located throughout the state. From the above link you can locate services by town or region.

For Crisis Intervention Services by Region, see:

Bullet pointCrisis Intervention Services Region One
Bullet pointCrisis Intervention Services Region Two
Bullet pointCrisis Intervention Services Region Three
Bullet pointCrisis Intervention Services Region Four
Bullet pointCrisis Intervention Services Region Five

Also see Warm Lines, Suicide Help, and Crisis Lines

Connecticut Fair Housing Center

The mission of the Connecticut Fair Housing Center is to ensure that all people have equal access to housing opportunities in Connecticut. Because Connecticut's low-income residents are particularly affected by discriminatory housing practices, the Center devotes its scarce resources principally to assisting Connecticut's low-income residents.

Connecticut Legal Rights Project, Inc.

CLRP is a nonprofit agency providing legal services for individuals with or in recovery from psychiatric disabilities, whether they are in hospitals or in the community.

Connecticut Legal Services

Connecticut Legal Services is a private, non-profit, civil law firm dedicated to helping low-income families and individuals obtain justice. The bulk of their work consists of providing civil law representation and counseling to thousands of low-income families and individuals each year.

Connecticut's Network of Care for Behavioral Health

The Network of Care site is a resource for individuals, families and agencies concerned with mental health. It provides information about mental health services, laws, and related news, as well as communication tools and other features. Regardless of where you begin your search for assistance with mental health issues, the Network of Care helps you find what you need

Connecticut Public Transportation Info

This is a complete directory of information about Connecticut's ridesharing, van pooling, and public transportation resources, including train and bus schedules, bus routes, Rideshare, Easy Street, etc.

Connecticut Shelters

Links to homeless, food, and emergency shelters in Connecticut:

• HomelessShelterDirectory.org (Connecticut) - A complete list of Connecticut Shelters.
• Connecticut Domestic Violence Shelters
• MACC Charities (Manchester)
• Mercy Housing and Shelters
• Columbus House (New Haven)
• My Sisters' Place (Hartford)
• Amazing Grace Food Pantry (Middletown)
• St. Vincent De Paul - Liberty Commons Supportive Housing (Middletown)

Connecticut Trauma Info and Help

Links to various trauma resources:

• Connecticut Coalition Against Domestic Violence
• The Trauma Directory (from Connecticut Women's Consortium):
• DMHAS Trauma Initiative
• Warm Lines and Crisis Lines
• Women and Children's Programs
• Dealing with the Effects of Trauma Self-Help Guide (from the SAMHSA "Recovering Your Mental Health" self-help guides)

Pointing arrowAlso see Trauma-Informed Care below for links to national trauma resources.

Discrimination Resources

See Anti-Discrimination and Anti-Stigma Resources.

Domestic Violence Resources

Resources that can provide help regarding domestic violence issues:

• Asian Family Services
• Connecticut Coalition Against Domestic Violence
• Connecticut Domestic Violence Shelters

Driving Directions to Key Locations

Detailed driving directions to the AU Office and other locations frequently used for AU activities, meetings, classes, legislative activities, and other pertinent events.


Drug Dangers is committed to providing information on a range of medications and medical devices that have serious complications. The website offers information of a range of drugs and medical products that can cause serious addiction, injury, or even death.

Drug Information from DrugWatch.com

Drugwatch is dedicated to informing you about seemingly safe, doctor-prescribed drugs and medical devices that could negatively impact your health and your life. All prescription drugs have side effects, but some that are approved by the FDA carry serious risks to your long-term health. DrugWatch.com provides information about potentially dangerous drugs and their side effects as well as medical devices that may not be as safe as you assume.

Drug Recall Guide

Recall Guide was established as a completely free service to assist people who take medications to get access to critical information about FDA drug recalls, warnings, and to share information about drug interactions, side effects and other crucial information within our community. It is the most effective, easiest to use medication tracking platform on the market. Best of all, it's free! Keep track of your medications, and learn about important recalls and prescription information that may directly affect you. Their goal is to supply important and helpful information about your prescriptions. They do this by leveraging an active community of users and by sharing important updates about the safety of specific drugs.

Eldercare Locator

The Eldercare Locator is a public service of the U.S. Administration on Aging and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services that connects you to services for older adults and their families. It is a nationwide service that provides information on senior services for older Americans and their caregivers.

Gambling Help in Connecticut

Resources for support and help with problem gambling. Also see AU's Problem Gambling help.

Gamblers Anonymous Meetings in Connecticut - A listing of meetings in Connecticut by day of the week and town.

Connecticut Council on Problem Gambling (CCPG) - CCPG's mission is to reduce the prevalence and impact of problem and pathological (compulsive) gambling on individuals, families, and society. Toll-free confidential 24-hour helpline: 1-800-346-6238.

DMHAS Problem Gambling Services - Help; prevention; training; help for family members, friends, employers and co-workers; resources for counselors; and more. Toll Free Help Line: 1-800-346-6238.

Connecticut Partnership for Responsible Gambling - In 1999, as part of its on-going efforts to balance revenue raising goals with social responsibility, the CT Lottery teamed up with the Connecticut Council on Problem Gambling (CCPG) and the Connecticut Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services (DMHAS) to form the CT Partnership for Responsible Gambling -- an alliance dedicated to promoting responsible gambling. The mission of the CT Partnership for Responsible Gambling is to serve as a combined leading resource for responsible gambling by offering information on guidelines for responsible gambling, warning signs of problem gambling, and available treatment services. Each partner contributes to the effort by offering its expertise and support to the program.

Problem Gambling Resources, Links, and Info - From Connecticut Clearinghouse.

Greater Hartford Legal Aid

Greater Hartford Legal Aid is a not-for-profit legal services agency whose staff helps clients with civil legal issues. We are advocates -- primarily lawyers and paralegals -- who use our resources and know-how to help people who have little money. Since 1958, GHLA attorneys have represented thousands of people and won significant victories for our clients in the fight for justice.


Take health care into your own hands. HealthCare.gov is a valuable resource for small businesses, consumers, and their families to search for coverage options and understand the new benefits under the Affordable Care Act. By putting the power of information at your fingertips, HealthCare.gov is helping American families everywhere to take control over their health care and make the choices that are right for them.

Plan Finder: Helping you get coverage before 2014The Insurance Finder tool enables users to begin the process of searching for coverage options. The tool asks users two initial questions: "select a state" and "which best describes you."  Users then click on "next steps," and are redirected to a page on HealthCare.gov that continues with the insurance finder process based on answers to their specific questions.

HealthCare.gov allows consumers to search for both public and private health coverage options through an easy to use health insurance finder tool. Based on answers to a series of questions, the coverage finder produces a menu of potential coverage choices personalized for the user.

College and Higher Education Resources for Persons with Disabilities

Links to resources and information that can be helpful for persons seeking college or post graduate degrees

Student Health and Wellness Guide - A comprehensive health, nutrition, and wellness guide for students whether they are on campus or taking online courses. Students can be quick to let their health fall to the wayside when they start college, but staying aware of good and bad health habits can serve them well in the long-term. Physical health and nutrition are directly connected to mental health, effective study habits, and regular sleep patterns. This comprehensive guide can help students as they balance course work with other commitments and responsibilities. Also see Critical Mental Health Resources for College Students

LearnPsychology.org - Mental Health and Well-being for College Students - A comprehensive guide to help college students identify common mental health disorders, their warning signs, how to manage them, and when to seek treatment. We're education enthusiasts who believe students who want to pursue a degree and career in mental health and psychology deserve to have access to the tools and resources they need to forge their path and meet their goals. At Learn Psychology, it is our goal to engage and inform by providing well-written, in-depth information, resources, and data for those interested in pursuing a degree in psychology and other mental health professions.

Affordable Colleges for Students With Disabilities - A complete guide for students with disabilities, including Financing for Disabled Students (loans, grants, and scholarships), Top Schools for Students with Disabilities, Online College for Disabled Students, and Job Resources for Disabled Grads.

Affordable Online Community College Programs - An expert-driven resource guidebook for students seeking advice and information about affordable programs from Community Colleges offering flexible online learning classes. Community colleges offer a truly cost effective option for students to earn a 2 year degree or the credits needed to transfer to a 4-year college.

Online Learning for Students with Disabilities - A complete guide to distance learning for students with disabilities. Learn how to work with disability services, employ assistive technology, evaluate online programs, and succeed in the virtual classroom. Online programs today benefit from advances in technology and offer rigorous curricula that rival those of in-classroom programs. The freedom to learn from anywhere at any time, and often at a student's own pace, is attractive to many. But for students with disabilities, online learning can offer additional advantages. From OnlineCollegesDatabase.org.

Guide to Social Worker Careers and Degree Programs - This new guide begins with an overview of the field and then dives into specific roles and responsibilities, essential skills, salary expectations by location, keys to career advancement, and degree and training options.

Social Work - MSW Graduate Programs - From GradSchools.com, over 400 different social work programs that potential students can look into. Includes directories for both online and campus MSW social work graduate programs, plus information about social work graduate programs and careers.

MSWOnlinePrograms.org - A website dedicated to helping social work students find the right graduate program at the right time in their career. The site offers a wealth of information relevant and helpful to your professional future. The site's blog is frequently updated with career information and other useful resources to get you on your way towards a long and successful journey in social work. Also see Careers in Social Work: Bachelor's Degree vs. Master's Degree.

SocialWorkLicensure.org - Resources, help, and requirements for becoming a licensed Social Worker. This site was founded and developed to assist those students and professionals seeking social work licensure. The mission at SocialWorkLicensure.org is to provide an easy to navigate and more efficient way to explore social work licensure requirements in each state by pinpointing or linking directly to commonly sought social work licensure information, such as application forms and related materials. For Connecticut, see Connecticut Social Work Licensure.

Accredited Online Colleges - The web's premier site for finding accredited online colleges around the US. School accreditation is vital to ensuring a quality education. But, determining accreditation can feel like working your way through a maze. Let our site be your guide. Accredited Online Colleges lets you search through countless accredited schools, based on a variety of criteria, to find the accredited college that best meets your needs. Also see Accredited Online Colleges and Disability Education.

We Connect Now - A website for college students with disabilities. We Connect Now was developed in an effort to connect and integrate college students with disabilities as a virtual community with a voice on important issues. The website is used as a resource by institutions of higher learning, colleges, universities, and groups serving people with disabilities in all 50 states and at least 10 other nations.

Scholarships for Persons with Disabilities

PointerCollege Financing for Disabled Students - Loan, grant, and scholarship links and opportunities. From AffordableCollegesOnline.org.
PointerFinancial Aid - Need help affording graduate school? The content found at this link will give you all the information you need regarding financial aid programs, resource providers, particulars on graduate school student loans, assistantships, fellowships, and scholarships. Also, tips on graduate school consolidation and repayment financial planning. From GradSchools.com.
PointerDisability Scholarships - Information about disability scholarships and help in searching for a scholarship, from Scholarships.com. Disability scholarships exist to provide college funding for students who have overcome a range of difficulties in their journey towards a degree. These scholarship opportunities help deserving students stay in school and out of debt, allowing them to more easily achieve their educational and career goals.
PointerGraduate Scholarships for Military Veterans - A variety of graduate school scholarships are available to military veterans, and their spouses and families to help fund an advanced degree. Find scholarships,resources and tips for navigating the application process. In this guide, you'll find funding tips you can use in addition to, or in place of, the GI Bill. Many of the sources are tailored to veterans, their spouses or family members looking for alternative options to pay for school. You will also find a checklist for applying for scholarships and numerous resources for finding additional aid opportunities. Also see A Guide to Master's Degrees for Military Members and Veterans.

History of the Consumer Movement

In December 2009, SAMHSA's ADS Center (Resource Center to Promote Acceptance, Dignity and Social Inclusion) broadcast a teleconference covering the History of the Mental Health Consumer/Survivor Movement. This teleconference provided a context to help consumers/survivors and others understand the origins of the movement, the challenges that members of the movement have encountered and overcome, and the societal advances gained through effective advocacy. This movement set the stage for efforts to support individuals in their personal recovery and to strengthen support for continued systemic change.

"What is the mental health consumer/survivor movement? Why is it important to understand its origins? Coinciding with the emergence of other civil rights movements, the consumer/survivor movement arose from the need to advocate for changes in the way society viewed and treated people with mental health problems. Early pioneers of the movement overcame multiple barriers and challenges to establish a powerful voice with an enduring message of self-determination and inclusion. Despite the enormous successes of the consumer/survivor movement over the last several decades that include a complete re-orientation of the mental health system around the concept of recovery, negative perceptions and attitudes about people with mental health problems are still prevalent. Further, many people are not aware of the impact of the movement on contemporary attitudes or the full range of capabilities offered by people with mental health problems. Discussing the accomplishments of the consumer/survivor movement can provide inspiration and hope for consumers/survivors and others and spark public awareness of the benefits of social inclusion."

You can view and/or download this comprehensive and well-rounded document here…

History of the Consumer Movement (Adobe reader format, 3MB).

Housing and Mortgages for People with Disabilities

A comprehensive guide on housing and mortgages for people with disabilities covering everything from the process of buying a house to financial assistance and terminology.

Housing for Persons with Disabilities

Sources of information for housing and homelessness services for persons with disabilities, including supportive housing and group homes in Connecticut:

Bullet point HUD: Housing for Persons with Disabilities - This is a link to the HUD website section for people with disabilities. It contains information from all parts of HUD's website and brings together everything pertaining to housing for persons with disabilities. Specific information that can assist persons in recovery find affordable and accessible units is available at HUD's Multifamily Inventory of Units for the Elderly and Persons with Disabilities web page.
Bullet point Housing Services from the DMHAS website - Includes links to CT's Supportive Housing Program.
Bullet point Housing Resources and Homeless Services Brochure - A downloadable brochure of information and resources in Connecticut from the DMHAS website (in Adobe Reader format).
Bullet point CLRP's H.O.M.E. Project - The H.O.M.E. Program (Helping Others Maintain Equality in housing) assists people with psychiatric disabilities and/or are clients of DMHAS who are having problems with their housing. See the HOME Project Flyer for more info.
Bullet point Leeway Supportive Housing - Leeway provides many services to support residents' needs. Besides excellent direct clinical care, they offer many services for addictions. They also provide supportive housing for the community and many of the Leeway Alumni.
Bullet point Liberty Commons Supportive Housing - A service of St. Vincent De Paul in Middletown, Liberty Commons is a rehabilitated 1920's hotel opened in 1996 as a premier supportive housing complex for forty men and women who have a history of homelessness, mental, physical, and addiction disabilities.
Bullet point My Sisters' Place - My Sisters' Place is a safe haven for homeless women and their children who are suddenly forced into the streets due to domestic violence, eviction, unemployment, or mental illness. Through guidance and empowerment, My Sisters' Place helps those who slip into homelessness transition to a future of self-reliance and permanent, safe housing.
Bullet point Connecticut Fair Housing Center - The mission of the Connecticut Fair Housing Center is to ensure that all people have equal access to housing opportunities in Connecticut. Because Connecticut's low-income residents are particularly affected by discriminatory housing practices, the Center devotes its scarce resources principally to assisting Connecticut's low-income residents.
Bullet point Also see Connecticut Section 8 Waiting List

Latino Community Services

Latino Community Services (LCS) provides a variety of programs and services designed to work with individuals at risk of HIV infection, people living with HIV/AIDS, and organizations who focus on populations impacted by HIV/AIDS. Programs and services include HIV/STD Testing, HIV Rapid Test, Prevention Services, Services for people with HIV/AIDS, and much more.

Legal Services in Connecticut

A listing and map of legal service agencies in Connecticut for low-income and elderly individuals. Also see on this page:

• Connecticut Legal Rights Project
• Connecticut Legal Services
• Greater Hartford Legal Aid
• New Haven Legal Assistance Association
• Statewide Legal Services of Connecticut

Local Mental Health Authorities

A listing of the primary Mental Health Authority in each region, along with a link to the DMHAS web page of all MHA's in the region.

Malta House of Care

Malta House of Care provides free basic primary health care to the uninsured at various locations in the cities of Hartford and Waterbury.

Medications and Sensitivity to Heat or Sun

Excessive heat exposure can pose higher risks for those on psychotropic medication or other substances. Individuals with behavioral health conditions who are taking psychotropic medications, or using certain substances such as illicit drugs and alcohol, may be at a higher risk for heatstroke and heat-related illnesses. These medications and substances can interfere with the body's ability to regulate heat and an individual's awareness that his or her body temperature is risingread more.

Also see:
   • Extreme Heat: What You Should Know
   • Extreme Heat: A Prevention Guide To Promote Your Personal Health and Safety

NAMI Connecticut

NAMI-CT is the only Connecticut organization affiliated with NAMI, the nation's leading grassroots family and consumer organization dedicated to improving the lives of people with serious mental illnesses and their families. Founded in 1984 by a group of Connecticut families, NAMI-CT is now the strongest family and consumer organization in the state, serving thousands of people. NAMI-CT offers support, education, and advocacy to people living with psychiatric conditions, family members, friends, professionals and the public at large. Visit the NAMI-CT website.

New Haven Legal Assistance Association

The New Haven Legal Assistance Association (LAA) provides high-quality legal services to individuals, families and groups in the greater New Haven area, including the lower Naugatuck Valley, who are unable to obtain legal services because of limited income, age, disability, discrimination and other barriers. LAA was one of the first legal services programs established and the federal government used it as a model for similar programs throughout the country. LAA continues to provide free legal services to eligible individuals and families in the greater New Haven area.

Olmstead 10th Anniversary: Still waiting…the Unfulfilled Promise of Olmstead

On the 10th anniversary of the Supreme Court's decision, the Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law issues this call to action to inform advocates, policymakers, and the public about the vital role the Supreme Court's landmark decision plays in enabling people with mental illnesses to benefit from community life. Too many people with mental illnesses remain segregated in board-and-care homes, nursing facilities, and other institutional placements at high cost to strapped state mental health systems, even though supportive community living is cost-effective–and the right thing to do. The time for action is long past!  See the full article (.pdf document, opens in a new browser window).

Patient's Rights

Your Rights as a Client or Patient, from the DMHAS website. Also see The Rights of People with Mental Illness in Connecticut.

Prescription Drug Assistance Programs

Prescription drug assistance programs that, for a small processing fee, provide free or nearly free medications to low-income individuals and families. These references are provided as information only. While these programs and organizations appear reputable, Advocacy Unlimited, Inc. does not guarantee or endorse these organizations, and assumes no responsibility for the use or application of any posted information in these programs. For more information and a listing of these programs, see Prescription Drug Assistance.

Public Internet Access Sites in CT

Find public Internet access sites, either in specific towns or throughout Connecticut.

Recovery Core Values

Recovery Basic Premises and Recovery Core Values for the Mental Health and Addictions Recovery System, as developed by Advocacy Unlimited, Inc. and The Connecticut Community for Addiction Recovery (CCAR).

Recovery Housing

FindRecoveryHousing.com - An internet site that serves as a referral source to recovery (sober) housing. Modeled after vacation rental sites, this one-of-a-kind service allows users to search recovery housing by zip code, location, gender and more. And searching the site is free! Our mission is to help you find a recovery house, in your neighborhood or across the countrya place where you can get well, and get your life back in order. With over 10 years experience as advocates for the Recovery Community in Connecticut, we realized helping people find a good environment to heal was a great need. So we compiled this Recovery Housing database to help you find a good recovery house anywhere in the country.
DMHAS Supported Recovery Housing - A listing by city of Recovery Housing Service Providers that are approved by DMHAS.
My Sisters' Place - A safe haven in Hartford, CT, for homeless women and their children who are suddenly forced into the streets due to domestic violence, eviction, unemployment, or mental illness.

Recovering Your Mental Health Self-Help Guides

SAMHSA's series of self-help guides providing facts, strategies, and ideas that consumers/survivors have found helpful in exercising best practices in promoting wellness and preventing illness. The information in this series supports recovery in conjunction with health care treatment.

Regional Mental Health Boards

A listing of Connecticut's five Regional Mental Health Boards, along with a link to the Catchment Area Councils (CAC's) in each region.

Respectful Disability Language

Links to information, resources, and guides for using appropriate and respectful disability language / terminology (these links open in a new browser window):

Respectful Disability Language - A guide to using appropriate words and language when talking to or about people with disabilities (from KASA - Kids As Self Advocates).
An Introductory Guide to Disability Language and Empowerment - Being "politically correct" does not make a term automatically inoffensive to a group of people (from Syracuse University Disability Cultural Center).
Respectful Disability Language - A guide for using appropriate disability language and terminology.
Respectful Disability Language: Here's What's Up! - A guide to using respectful words and language (from the National Youth Leadership Network).
Person First Language - Using inclusive and respectful language that values people with disabilities (from the West Virginia S.A.F.E. Training and Collaboration Toolkit).
People First Language: Dignity, Not Semantics - Language is power: our words have the power to teach, inspire, motivate, and uplift people (by AU Founder Yvette Sangster)
Stigma: Language Matters - Stigma is about disrespect: It hurts, punishes and diminishes people. It harms and undermines all relationships (from the City of Alexandria, VA website, adapted from SAMHSA, Center for Mental Health Services and "Removing Bias in Language: Disabilities," APA Style Manual).

The Rights of People with Mental Illness in Connecticut

The complete and definitive booklet, written by Yale law student Carl Riehl with the assistance of Attorneys Edward Mattison and Thomas Behrendt, describing the legal rights of people with mental illness in Connecticut.  Also see Patient's Rights.

Scholarships for Persons with Disabilities

See Higher Education Resources for People with Disabilities.

Section 8 Waiting List - Connecticut  (Housing Choice Voucher Program)

To see open Section 8 waiting lists in Connecticut, visit the Housing Choice Voucher Program website. You can also register to be notified by email when a waiting list is opened. To find out about other affordable housing options, see Housing Resources on the 2-1-1 Connecticut website.

Renters Rebate Programs:

- Low Income/Subsidized Private Rental Housing (from 2-1-1 Info Line)

- For a list of contact info by town, see CT Towns Renters Rebate Information.

- Manchester Renter's Rebate: The Senior, Adult and Family Services Division of the Town of Manchester is accepting applications for the State of Connecticut Renter's Rebate Program through October 1st, 2015. This program provides a one time yearly payment to renters based on income, rent and utilities that were paid from the previous year (2014). Applicants must be 65 or over by 12/31/14 or be permanently and totally disabled as defined by Social Security and at least 18 years of age by 12/31/14. Income limits apply. To make an appointment to apply, please call 860-647-3096. We are located at 479 Main Street in the Weiss Building. See Manchester Renter's Rebate for more info.

Also see:

- Housing for Persons with Disabilities

- GoSection8 - The largest nationwide rental-listing service for the Section 8 housing market. Very easy to search for Section 8 Housing by Zip Code. We service families, landlords, and public-housing agencies across the United States. Hundreds of thousands of tenants and landlords nationwide benefit from our programs. The company's core mission is to help Americans living in poverty. We provide free information about current housing options under HUD's Section 8 Housing Voucher Program in every market in the country.

Self-Help Directory

A directory of phone numbers and web addresses to assist you in finding help on several subjects.

Service Animals

Resources and help regarding psychiatric service dogs, therapy dogs, and emotional support animals:

Special Notice…
Are you or someone you know seriously interested in obtaining a psychiatric service dog? AU Graduate Joanne Shortell and her psychiatric service dog Maeve can help! Joanne and Maeve help people with psychiatric disabilities discover their rights to emotional support animals in no-pets housing without pet deposits or pet fees and their rights to service dogs. Visit their website www.servicepoodle.com for more information and to contact Joanne.

Three Strikes and You're Dead…
In honor of suicide prevention week, see Joanne Shortell's blog Three Strikes and You're Dead, a reminder of how the Fair Housing Act's recognition of emotional support animals can save lives.
Maeve - Psychiatric Service Dog and Advocate - Maeve is a wonderful service dog for AU Graduate Joanne Shortell. Maeve became AU's first Graduate Service Dog when she successfully completed the 2010 Torrington Advocacy Education Course. Maeve's website provides information about Psychiatric Service Dogs (PSD), including how to get an emotional support animal, pros and cons of dogs for people with psychiatric disabilities, and information about the laws.
American Poodles At Work - American Poodles At Work (APAW) is a non-profit organization primarily dedicated to the training and placement of Service Dogs with their human partners. As an unobtrusive helpmate, a trained dog provides valuable assistance every day, all day. American Poodles At Work was founded to provide highly-trained assistance dogs to people who prefer or need a Poodle due to allergies or lifestyle. We carefully select and teach our dogs, always with the end goal in mind -- a joyful, willing and intelligent, unobtrusive helpmate.
Service Dogs America - Service Dogs America recognizes that you may train you own dog and supplies you with the appropriate identification to allow your dog to accompany you anywhere the public is allowed.

Shelters in Connecticut

See Connecticut Shelters.

Social Security Disability Resources

Social Security and Disability Resource Center
The goal of the Social Security and Disability Resource Center is to inform readers about how the disability process works.

SSI/SSDI - A Guide to Applying for Disability Benefits for People with a Mental Health Disorder
How to apply for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) for persons with a Mental Health Disorder. This article by Molly Clarke provides step-by-step instructions explaining how to apply for benefits and what to expect throughout. Molly Clarke is a writer for the Social Security Disability Help blog

SSI/SSDI Benefits and Employment Mythbusters
A document created by DMHAS, BRS, and SSA regarding myths surrounding Work, Disability, and Benefits to help clarify common misconceptions about SSI/SSDI benefits and employment (.pdf document)

Note: Depending on your Internet connection, this document may take a few minutes to download (size = 6MB).

Social Security Administration
The Official Website of the U.S. Social Security Administration.

Supplemental Security Income (SSI)

Disability Benefits

State, Local, and U.S. Legislators

A convenient link where you can find and write to your state, local, and U.S. Legislators and Congress Members.

Statewide Legal Services of Connecticut

Statewide Legal Services of Connecticut is a private, non-profit corporation dedicated to helping as many low income people as possible to understand their civil (non-criminal) legal problems. We cooperate with other non-profit law firms and volunteer attorneys to provide a broad range of legal services to Connecticut's low income. Eligible clients can call us about any non-criminal legal issue, but we can be most helpful to people calling about housing (including evictions, public housing, repairs, and foreclosure), children and families (including divorce, child support, custody, guardianship, visitation, and restraining orders), benefits and work, consumer issues, elderly concerns, utilities and energy.

Stigma Resources

   - See Anti-Discrimination and Anti-Stigma Resources.

Suicide and Crisis Help

Links to several helpful and effective Suicide and Crisis Help websites.

Also see Connecticut Crisis Services.

Tardive Dyskinesia Information and Resources

The following websites provide much information about Tardive Dyskinesia including what it is, typical causes, diagnosis, treatment options, and legal options.

Tardive Dyskinesia Center (www.tardivedyskinesia.com) - Tardive Dyskinesia (TD) is a result of damage to the bodily systems that process dopamine, and is typically caused by exposure to certain neurological medications - including Reglan. When a patient has been taking certain prescription drugs over a long period of time, often at high dosages, involuntary, repetitive tic-like movements can result, primarily in the facial muscles or (less commonly) the limbs, fingers and toes. The hips and torso may also be affected. The Tardive Dyskinesia Center offers the most up-to-date information on TD, its causes, and all known treatment options as well as legal options.

Tardive-Dyskinesia (www.tardive-dyskinesia.com) - Tardive, meaning late, and dyskinesias being movement disorders, are neurological side effects of anti-psychotic medications that can be disabling and disfiguring. The Tardive-Dyskinesia website offers information on the symptoms, treatment, and side effects of Tardive Dyskinesia and information on the many anti-psychotic drugs utilized in the treatment of schizophrenia. Resources for contacting a lawyer and learning about legal rights regarding Tardive Dyskinesia are also available on the site.

Teen Challenge New England (Residential drug recovery program)

Teen Challenge is a 15 to 21-month Christian residential drug recovery program with an incredible success rate for graduates. 86.6% of graduates after seven years remain drug and crime free, as opposed to 6-7% rate for secular programs. It is part of a network of 10 Teen Challenge centers across New England and New Jersey.

The Next Right Thing

The Next Right Thing, LLC offers community-based substance abuse and mental health treatment for adolescents (ages 16-23) and their families. Substance abuse and mental health problems are symptoms of a disease in an adolescent's life. Treatment in the community with families and peers is the solution.

The Next Right Thing is located in Bishop's Corner, West Hartford at the crossroads of North Main Street and Route 44, offering easy access to neighboring communities.

Trauma-Informed Care

Links to trauma-informed care resources:

   • National Center for Trauma-Informed Care (NCTIC)
   • NCTIC's Trauma-Informed Facebook Group  Facebook Icon

Also see Connecticut Trauma Info and Help above.

Understanding Mental Health - Get Help Coping with a Traumatic Event and Learn the Facts about Mental Illness and Violence

More than a dozen helpful resources from SAMHSA relating to Coping with a Traumatic Event and Learning the Facts about Mental Illness and Violence.  All resources can be found here.

Veterans - Resources and Help for Veterans and Their Families

Serving Those Who Served

Jobs and Employment Resources - Job listings and employment resources specifically for Veterans and service members.

Veterans Job Bank - Search millions of jobs based on your military background. Translate your military skills to a civilian career.

• SAMHSA - Veterans and their families are a SAMHSA priority, and SAMHSA has provided a number of helpful resources for veterans

~ Veterans & Their Families: A SAMHSA Priority, Part 1

~ Veterans & Their Families: A SAMHSA Priority, Part 2

~ Veterans & Their Families Home Page

~ Other Resources for Veterans

Department of Veterans Affairs

~ VA's Mental Health homepage

~ Federal Benefits for Veterans, Dependents and Survivors - Information about health care, pensions, education and training, home loans, life insurance, transition assistance and how to appeal a decision on a claim for benefits.

~ VA's National Center for PTSD - Fact sheets, tips, and guides on coping with war trauma or a loved one's return from deployment

~ VA's Center for Women Veterans

~ VA Locations in Connecticut

Guide to VA Mental Health Services for Veterans & Families (.pdf document)

Connecticut Department of Veterans' Affairs

DMHAS Veterans Services - Serving Connecticut's Veterans, Citizen Soldiers, and their Families.

PTSD Foundation of America
PTSD Foundation of America is a non-profit organization dedicated to mentoring to our combat veterans and their families with post traumatic stress, providing hope and healing for the unseen wounds of war. Many warriors are coming home with visible wounds; countless others are coming home with scars we cannot see, wounded souls from witnessing the horrors of war over and over again - PTSD. We feel it is our duty as Americans to help these mighty warriors and their families adjust and find their new normal. Visit PTSD Foundation of America at PTSDusa.net

“A Veteran – whether active duty, retired, national guard or reserve – is someone who, at one point in his or her life, wrote a blank check made payable to The United States of America, for an amount of ‘up to and including my life.’” ~ PTSD Foundation of America

Healing From Complex Trauma and PTSD
Assisting people in their healing from complex trauma journey. Also for those supporting someone they know, or wishing to educate themselves further about Post Traumatic Stress Disorder – PTSD, Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder C-PTSD, and complex trauma.

Make the Connection
Connecting Veterans and their friends and family members with information, resources, and solutions to issues affecting their health, well-being, and everyday lives. Hear inspiring stories of strength. Learn what has worked for other Veterans. Discover positive steps you can take - all in the words of Veterans just like you. Make the Connection is a public awareness campaign by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs aimed at helping Veterans overcome and seek treatment for mental health conditions. The campaign provides extensive resources for Veterans suffering from post traumatic stress, including:

~ VA approved treatment and support resources

~ Hundreds of video testimonials from Veterans who overcame PTSD

~ Information on how to recognize PTSD and seek treatment

~ See Make the Connection's PTSD section

WristbandSupplies.com - Raising Awareness for Veteran Organizations

~ Ways to support Veterans: Homes for Veterans; Jobs for Veterans; Veterans with PTSD

• Mesothelioma Help for Veterans

~ Mesothelioma Group - Supporting Veterans – The Mesothelioma Group is a charitable organization supporting the VFW and American Legion. With over 30% of all mesothelioma patients being Veterans, a main part of their mission is to spread mesothelioma awareness to Veterans and their family members. The reason this cancer targets so many veterans is because of the extensive amount of asbestos used in past military equipment. The goal at the Mesothelioma Group is to increase awareness, improving survival rates and life expectancy. The Mesothelioma Group Support Community provides step-by-step guidance, Veteran support, and up-to-date resources for veterans, all for free.

~ MesotheliomaHelp.org - Veteran Asbestos Exposure – Veterans diagnosed with mesothelioma as a result of active duty are entitled to benefits from the federal government. Veterans have a higher incidence of mesothelioma and other asbestos-related diseases than the general population. In fact, veterans make up approximately 30 percent of all U.S. cases of mesothelioma.

~ Mesotheliomaguide.com – Veterans who develop mesothelioma as a result of their service in the military are entitled to benefits and assistance from the U.S. government. This guide will help you understand your benefits and help you file and receive your VA Benefits.

National Resource Directory

~ Connecting wounded warriors, service members, veterans, their families and caregivers with those who support them. The National Resource Directory (NRD) provides access to services and resources at the national, state and local levels that support recovery, rehabilitation and community reintegration.

Graduate Scholarships for Military Veterans

~ A variety of graduate school scholarships are available to military veterans, and their spouses and families to help fund an advanced degree. Find scholarships,resources and tips for navigating the application process. In this guide, you'll find funding tips you can use in addition to, or in place of, the GI Bill. Many of the sources are tailored to veterans, their spouses or family members looking for alternative options to pay for school. You will also find a checklist for applying for scholarships and numerous resources for finding additional aid opportunities.

~ Also see A Guide to Master's Degrees for Military Members and Veterans.

Suicide and Crisis Help Lines

Military Crisis Line (for Active Duty, Reserves, or Guard)

Veterans Crisis Line (for Veterans)

Veteran's Family and Friends Crisis Line (for Family and Friends)

Veterans 24x7 Confidential Online Chat
If you're a Veteran in crisis or concerned about one, responders at the Veterans Crisis Line online chat offer help that can make a difference. Caring, qualified VA professionals are standing by to provide free and confidential support. Use the Veterans Chat to get online support anonymously, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year – even if you're not registered with VA or enrolled in VA health care. Responders will work with you to help you get through any personal crisis, even if that crisis does not involve thoughts of suicide.

• Recognizing the Signs of Suicide:
       Bullet pointLearn to Recognize the Signs
       Bullet pointSigns of Crisis

Warm Lines, Suicide Help, and Crisis Lines

Information for many of Connecticut's non-crisis Warm Lines as well as links to several helpful and extremely effective Suicide and Crisis Help websites.

PointerWarm Lines
PointerCrisis Lines and Suicide Help

Also see Connecticut Crisis Services.

We Connect Now - A website for college students with disabilities

See Higher Education Resources for People with Disabilities.

Work as a Priority:  A Resource for Employing People Who Have Serious Mental Illnesses and Who Are Homeless

From the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, and the Center for Substance Abuse Prevention, this guidebook is designed to help service providers and others make informed decisions as they guide people who are experiencing homelessness and have mental illnesses into employment.

You and Your Mental Wellness:  Award winning monthly talk show

Victoria Molta is host and producer of the award winning monthly talk show, "You and Your Mental Wellness." She is a person in recovery and a long time mental health advocate having worked at lead mental health agencies and clubhouses around the state for over twenty five years. She is in touch with the challenges, struggles and triumphs of people with mental health and/or substance use issues. Her show won a Connecticut Mental Health Media Award in 2012 from National Alliance on Mental Illness-CT, and the CT Dept. of Mental Health and Addiction Services. Her show airs on cable access television in New Haven and Madison, and on YouTube. She has featured leaders in the mental health field around the state who have discussed anything from Reiki to nutrition to resources of support groups and healing centers. The primary message is to feature guests who have turned their lives around despite enormous odds against them. They have never given up their hope that recovery is possible.  Watch this month's episode now.


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