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About Us


A standard bearer in comprehensive peer recovery services in minority communities in Virginia, I Rise Up, Inc. has helped reach, teach and support low-income and at-risk persons and families with a variety of behavioral health issues and homelessness through an effective, culturally competent strategy that has been shown to rehabilitate lives and rebuild communities.


I Rise Up provides evidenced based Peer Recovery Supports for recovering individuals with Mental Health challenges and homelessness.



Amid startling statewide statistics that are the highest in the nation -- 



The loss of life data

Hands Up

Peer Recovery Support: People Helping People

From a place of first-hand, lived experience, the I Rise Up organization augments professional services with peer-based models of care to further engage challenged populations and enhance community outcomes.  


Peer-based models of care can have a transforming effect on larger systems of care and on our society by enhancing long-term addiction recovery outcomes and elevating public and professional perceptions of hope for recovery.


I Rise Up strives to achieve a delicate balance between peer-based and professional services. Peers can reach people that may be unwilling to engage with and trust professionals. Peer mentors provide living proof of success and hope for individuals with mental illness that recovery is possible.


Peer Support Specialists have gone through a process of recovery and have obtained peer support related training to assist others with mental health challenges to identify and achieve life goals as part of their own recovery.


The portfolio of I Rise Up professional services include Mental first Aid, Trauma Care, Restore, Advocacy training, intake processing, assist the homeless with SSI and SSDI agency navigation.

Image by Jakayla Toney

Peer Recovery Services: Epidemic Drug Addiction

In poor, inner-city communities, young smokers of crack cocaine, particularly women who have sex in exchange for money or drugs, are at high risk for HIV infection. The prevalence of HIV was highest among the crack-smoking women in New York -- 29.6 percent (The New England Journal of Medicine ( For young black men, the rate of survival beyond the age of 40 is lower in Harlem than Bangladesh due in large measure to the HIV epidemic and other poor health( conditions.(NYC Department of Health).The dramatic growth of youth homicide is attributable to the illicit drug trade as many dealers become their own best customers and victims in turf wars (Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology).The prevalence of Intimate Partner Violence  increases with the use of heroin, crack, cocaine and marijuana, which in turn also increases the frequency of use of these drugs (American Journal of Public Health).


Peer Recovery Services: Homelessness

Now, more than ever, an effective and engaging community-based treatment and prevention program is needed to reduce the ravages of homelessness and its consequences among the next generation of young people and families.


The goal for homeless individuals through different "levels" of housing, will move the homeless individual or household immediately from the streets or homeless shelters into their own apartments. Clients with serious mental challenges are often accompanied with substance abuse, history of involvement. A multi-disciplinary and multilingual team provides a service that is based on intensive case management and assertive outreach.


The Peer Support Specialist collaborates with consumers to provide individualized and flexible support to engage and integrate them into the community and helps to facilitate their access to resources and supports to maximize their independence and potential and promote their recovery.


Peer Support Specialists have gone through a process of recovery and have obtained peer support related training to assist others with mental health challenges to identify and achieve life goals as part of their own recovery. In collaboration with the Housing First team, the Peer Support Specialist uses empowerment and recovery-oriented approaches with individuals and groups to help combat stigma, raise self-esteem and mastery, improve self-concept, and instill hope.


In addition to compliance with all organizational policies and procedures, the incumbent is also expected to behave ethically, demonstrate competence in effective communication and team building, demonstrate effectiveness in working in a collaborative environment, and demonstrate confidence in decision-making and in building relationships.

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People Helping People: Reciprocal Benefits of Peer Support Modalities

The benefits of Peer Support are wide ranging for those receiving the support, peer-support workers themselves, and for the mental health system. One of the key benefits of Peer Support is the greater perceived empathy and respect that peer supporters are seen to have for the individuals they support.


Peer Support also has benefits for peer support workers themselves, increasing levels of self-esteem, confidence and positive feelings that they are doing good. Peer-support workers often experience an increase in their own ability to cope mental health problems.


Peer Support also benefits the health system as it can lead to decrease in hospital admissions for those taking part.

Peer-support programs have been developed to such an extent that peer supporters, with adequate training, can help their peers with the following issues:

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