Transformative Change

Transformative Change in Community Mental Health

Mission Statement

We seek to establish an alternative paradigm to the promotion of mental health based in community settings upon the values of citizenship, recovery, empowerment, inclusion, and social justice. Our work includes the articulation of models, identification of promising practices, and research to demonstrate the value of this alternative paradigm. Through a SCRA interest group, we seek to create an international network that can support the development of this paradigm and transformative change in mental health systems and communities that includes partnerships with community leaders, consumers/survivors/users, mental health professionals, social and biomedical scientists. Through such a network, we aim to find ways to be a resource groups, individuals, and communities that are interested in pursuing alternative paradigms for the promotion of mental health in community settings.

The declaration of the International Network for Transformative Change in Community Mental Health can be found HERE.

Background

At the first International Conference on Community Psychology held in Lisbon, Portugal in June, 2008, Drs. Bret Kloos, José Ornelas, and Geoff Nelson began discussions about their mutual interests in promoting community mental health in the field of community psychology. This led to several conference presentations and publications (see below). In 2010, a group of community psychologists began having regular (monthly or bi-monthly) teleconferences, led by Dr. Kloos, to discuss network activities. This group developed a declaration for the network (make a link to the document at the end of this page). This has been a very productive group of community psychology faculty and students, even before becoming an interest group of SCRA. The Transformative Change in Community Mental Health began formally as an Interest Group in January, 2015.

How Can I Participate?

We invite you to join in the group's activities, use the resources linked here, and to contact current Chair, José Ornelas, with any questions:  

The Interest Group holds quarterly phone meetings to meet each other, exchange ideas, and discuss Interest Group projects, ongoing and new.  Please plan to attend!  Its great to learn from one another, and if you are interested in signing up to get help on your project, please contact us.

We also encourage you to join the Interest Group listserv.

To subscribe:

  1. Send e-mail to LISTSERV@LISTS.APA.ORG
  2. Leave the subject area blank
  3. In your message area type:  SUBSCRIBE SCRA-TRANSFORMATIVECHANGECMH Your_first_name Your_last_name (e.g. Fred Smith)

To post a message to the list send e-mail to SCRA-TRANSFORMATIVECHANGECMH@LISTS.APA.ORG. (Also, be sure that you are sending the message from the e-mail account you used to subscribe).

Finally, the Interest Group has a column in The Community Psychologist.  We encourage you to submit pieces related to transformative change in community mental health.  It's a great outlet for editorials and a variety of practice, research, education, and other projects.  Please email us to propose or submit an article. Submissions are needed!

AJCP Special Issue

Several members of the transformative change interest group – Drs. Greg Townley, Molly Brown, and John Sylvestre – will be co-editing a special issue of the American Journal of Community Psychology on Community Psychology and Community Mental Health: A Call for Reengagement

Minutes of Meetings 

Current Research and Action

The current research and action by Interest Group members falls into three overlapping categories: 

  • Homelessness, Mental Health, and Housing First
  • Consumer-led Research and Initiatives
  • Community Integration

Conference Presentations and Network Meetings by Interest Group Members 

  • Symposium entitled “Contributions of Community Psychology Towards Transformative Change in Community Mental Health,” Society for Community Research and Action Biennial Conference, Montclair, New Jersey, June 18, 2009.
  • Symposium entitled “Community Psychology Applications for Organizational Transformative Change in Mental Health,” 7th European Congress of Community Psychology, Paris, October 29, 2011.
  • Transformative Change in Mental Health, Pre-conference to the Society for Community Research and Action’s Biennial Conference, Chicago, June 15, 2011.
  • Transformative Change in Mental Health, Pre-conference to the IVth International Conference of Community Psychology, Barcelona, June 20, 2012.
  • Meeting of the Transformative Change in Mental Health Network, Society for Community Research and Action’s Biennial Conference, Miami, June 26, 2013.

Publications

  • Nelson, G., Kloos, B., & Ornelas, J. (Eds.). (2014). Community psychology and community mental health: Towards transformative change (Society for Community Research and Action book series). New York: Oxford University Press.
  • Townley, G., & Sylvestre, J. (Eds.). (2014). Transformative change in community mental health [Special issue]. Global Journal of Community Psychology Practice, 5(1).
  • Nelson, G., Kloos, B., & Ornelas, J. (2016). Creating transformative change in community mental health: Contributions from community psychology. In M.A. Bond, C.B. Keys, & I. Serrano-García (Eds.), Handbook of community psychology: Volume I: Theoretical foundations, core concepts, and emerging challenges. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.
  • Sylvestre, J., Nelson, G., & Aubry, T. (Eds.). (2017). Housing, citizenship, and communities for people with serious mental illness: Theory, research, practice, and policy perspectives (Society for Community Research and Action book series). New York: Oxford University Press.

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Interest Group Chairperson: Dr. José Ornelas, ISPA, Lisbon, Portugal