Tag Archives: Alaska

Mental Health First Aid Training at The Wellness Innovations Center

Mental Health First Aid Training
For people in recovery

mental health first aid

Thursday January 23rd & Friday Jan 24th
From 10:00 – 3:30 pm both days
Lunch is included
This is an 8 hour course and you must attend all 8 hours to receive a certificate.

Mental Health First Aid
is an in-person training that teaches you how to help persons developing a mental illness or in a crisis.
Facilitators will be Joan Cullinane & John Sperbeck
Please call Joan at 762-8652 to register


Our mental health blog is back!

Due to some technical issues we have taken a break from posting as we did not want to nurse a negative tendency towards our computer involving a hammer. The December calendar has been posted somewhat belatedly.

Our craft fair and holiday party are over but if you are feeling isolated next week we will be seeing people for employment appointments on Monday and will be open from 9 am- 12 noon Christmas eve then closed Christmas and open again full time Thursday and Friday.

We will be hosting a Mental Health First Aid training on Thurs Jan 23rd and Friday Jan 24th from 10 am- 3:30 pm (with breaks). This is an 8 hour training which helps people understand how and why they might approach and offer support for someone showing signs of mental distress. This training is being offered through Anchorage Community Mental Health Services specifically for people in mental health recovery to help them feel comfortable using their recovery skills with others. Please call Joan at 762-8652 if you are interested. The training will be facilitated by Joan Cullinane and John Sperbeck.

Recovery month celebration project


To celebrate people in recovery we have started making flowers for everyone we know and don’t know is in recovery. We will be bringing them to some of the different agencies in town where people in recovery work and attend. We will hand them out to honor our friends.

The colors purple and yellow were chosen as the theme for National Recovery month so we, being frugal, bought purple and yellow paper napkins and transformed them, with a multitude of pipe cleaners into poppies, roses and imaginary flora. Please feel free to stop by The Wellness Innovations Center and pick one for yourself and one for a friend. We may show up some place near you in the near future.

Peer support training/process group up and running


We had our first meeting with 7 people, two of whom have had  training in peer support. Everyone who attended has supported The Wellness Innovations Center in some way and is working on their recovery goals.  

 We have a starting curriculum and talked about what peer support is. Topics such as balance, acceptance, and commitment came up. If you are interested in building a support community in your life, we would love for you to join us in our exploration of what this means to you and how we can help make it a reality here at The Wellness Center and across the community. 

We are also willing to share our curriculum with you, once we get it in a little better shape. It  involved more discussion and exercises and less reading than most but will probably change each time we meet.

We have decided that our next meeting will be at 12 noon on Friday August 16th. That way all the cookies will be baked!

Talent = perspective + gifts + courage



I remember the phrase, “I wish I had as much talent as they do in their little finger.”

That’s how I always felt. I love doing certain things, cooking, acting, writing, but I figured that I was not up to par. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve realized that living everyday takes talent and the marvelous performers who I see on The Tony Awards are not just talented, they are ambitious and driven.

We will be having a talent show Thursday June 27th at The Wellness Innovations Center during lunch.  This isn’t about ambition but about getting up there and having fun. It’s about knowing that even though you might feel like you would rather die than tell a joke and mess it up, it might even be funny if you mess it up.

So come on over and perform or watch. Play charades with us. Laugh, applaud, sing along. Perspective and courage are gifts that are far more valuable than fame and fortune.

Don’t tell me you’re disabled, tell me what you’re good at!

People have identities which are built around the concept of being disabled.  It’s hard to find a job if this is the first thought that comes to your mind everyday and keeps popping up.  I have to work at not defining myself as primarily a person with mental health issues.  I am a person in recovery, I’m a  baker, a singer, I make people laugh,  I’m a writer, a sister – you know the drill. 

I also like to build community. The mental health community is only one community I belong to.  I encourage people to practice defining themselves not just by a job or a disability but by what they like to do and what they excel at. This way, if they want to get a job they are already for an interview. 

Here are some current training opportunities for getting out and being part of the Anchorage working community, if that’s your thing. If you need some help with that, come see us at 2735 E. Tudor Rd, 562-7900. Ask for Joan or Alvin.

Recruiters from Personnel Plus will be at the Anchorage Job Center Midtown on Monday at 4:00 p.m. to recruit for a multitude of laborer positions.  Stop by the job center at 3301 Eagle Street, Room 104 on Monday for more information

Johnson’s Tire Service is looking to fill several positions for Sales Associate/Customer Service to work at the front counter.  Fulltime Permanent. This is an excellent opportunity and the employer is willing to train.

click on the links below for more information about:

Job corp Orientation 2013

Burlington_CoatFactory 6-6-13C

UPS 6-14-2013

For more information and to apply go to http://www.jtsalaska.com/#/careers or search ALEXsys for job order 240902 for instructions on faxing or emailing your resume and a complete job description. https://alexsys.labor.state.ak.us/

Don’t forget we’re having a big garage sale fundraiser  Friday June 7th from 10:30 – 2 pm. We have 900 videotapes in all genres so if you haven’t thrown out your VCR, this will be cheaper than netflicks or streaming – 25cents each.

Also our new calendar for June is posted on the calendar page of this blog!

Sustainability and mental health through yard sales


thrift shop 2

What do yard sales have to do with mental health? last week we at The WIC had to do some end of the fiscal year creative thinking around our schedule. We decided that we better spend some more time making money than spending it! We are going to have a yard sale/bake sale on Friday June 7th from 10:30 to 2 pm out here at 2735 E. Tudor Road.

We did a little research last Friday and found out that if you tell people that you need something and don’t have enough money to pay you can often work out a deal at a yard sale.  Sure people want to make some money but they also want their stuff to go away so asking if you can have it for less or nothing is often a risk worth taking.

The Macklemore & Lewis song is right in many ways. It’s way cooler to get something cheap and original than to spend money for something that’s made to go out of style in a week.  Sometimes I feel proud of the bargains I’ve found. Other times I start to realize that I don’t really need too much more stuff in my life.  Also I get to know people in my community rather intimately. You find out that someone’s husband died or their grandpa, that their kid moved away and that’s why they’re having the sale.  We met someone with most of a clarinet last week. I hadn’t realized I still wanted to learn an instrument until I saw that.

thrift shop

It’s never too late to be an entrepreneur. We saw a couple of smaller sales which appear to have sprung up around a big organized one which had brought people down their street.  Do you remember the phrase “rent party”?  We are kind of doing the same thing, inviting our friends to help us pull through a dry patch. We would do the same for you! We have books and games for sale and some stuff we are all going to bring from home. All the money goes to the Wellness Innovations Center  member food and activity fund. If you want to donate anything just send an email, comment or give a call to us at 762-8652.

Anyway feel free to stop by our yard sale  or have your own and spread the love.