Since 1951, MHASP is a leader regionally, statewide and nationally in transforming mental health services to become more responsive to the priorities of individuals with mental health challenges and their family members.
Our history is a robust story of creating opportunities for individuals and family members to experience hope and overcome the challenges imposed by mental health conditions. We are dedicated to innovating new service approaches, reducing discrimination, restoring hope and self-esteem, and creating the circumstances for individuals to improve their lives.
MHASP is a nonprofit corporation that creates opportunities for individuals and family members to effectively respond to the challenges of mental health conditions through our work in five domains: advocacy, direct support to individuals, training and education, information and referral, and technical assistance.
Including individuals with mental health conditions and family members in all aspects of MHASP operations is an organizational value and practice. Demonstrating the benefits of people in recovery and family members working with other professionals has positioned MHASP for a unique leadership role in a health care system that is rapidly shifting responsibility for health care management to consumers.
Throughout Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery and Philadelphia counties, MHASP offers more than 40 services, most of which are peer-to-peer. Statewide and nationally, MHASP provides training, advocacy and technical assistance.
Individuals challenged by mental health conditions are empowered to direct their recovery journeys, and family members are prepared to play supportive roles, all as members of informed and inclusive communities.
To promote groundbreaking ideas and create opportunities for resilience and recovery by applying the knowledge learned from the people we support, employ, and engage in transformative partnerships.
- Hope: The recovery journey is anchored by the belief that a better future is possible – that individuals can and do overcome obstacles and accomplish their life goals.
- Support: Involvement with peers and others who are empathetic, encouraging, non-judgmental, and who share knowledge gained from their experience is critical to recovery. The opportunity to provide such support is invaluable.
- Respect: Accepting others as equals and receiving such acceptance in return enhances self-esteem and promotes recovery; societal acceptance reduces discrimination and stigma.
- Cultural Sensitivity: Culture provides a context in which to understand the recovering person. To understand culture, one must identify deeply held attitudes, values, beliefs, and practices.
- Strengths Based: Recovery occurs as people identify and use their multiple strengths, resiliencies, coping skills, talents, abilities and capabilities.
- Education and Learning: Acquiring the knowledge and skills to go beyond personal challenges and to use resources that support personal growth, autonomy and well-being fosters recovery.
- Self-Determination and Choice are cornerstones of recovery and necessary for empowerment. One has to be offered options in order to be in control of one’s life.
- Holism: Recovery informs all aspects of life, from the mind to the body to the spirit.
- Personal Responsibility: Recovery requires the courage to make decisions, to take risks, to rely on oneself with the help of others, and to realize that it is up to each person to achieve his/her purpose in life.
- Empowerment: Individuals gain self-confidence and self-esteem as they learn to express themselves, make decisions and find that their actions make a difference.
Our work is guided by the following convictions
- People with serious mental health conditions can and do recover.
- Recovery is different for each person, but is possible for all.
- Recovery occurs in the community and with connections to natural supports.
- Individuals affected by mental health conditions are endowed with the resilience required to overcome significant adversity.
- Creating an environment of hope is the first step for a successful recovery journey.
- The active involvement of people with mental health conditions and family members at all levels of planning and development is essential for the achievement of system transformation and successful outcomes.
- Children, youth, adults, family members and communities have the capacity for resilience and recovery.
- Successful organizations proactively include all employees and other stakeholders in organizational development, planning and decision-making.