Collections > Master's Papers > Gillings School of Public Health > A Leadership Curriculum for Emerging Adults
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The System of Care philosophy calls for the active participation of those most affected by mental health services to share their expertise and insight in order to guide culturally-competent supports and services that meet their needs. However, meaningful partnerships are hindered by mental health stigma and cultural gaps between agencies and community members. The Leadership Series is a program that attempts to bridge this gap by preparing young adults who are struggling with behavioral and/or mental health issues to become more aware of their strengths and needs, to help manage behavior and triggers, and to develop skills that enable them to advocate for themselves on a personal, local, state, and national level. Prior to the drafting of the following document, there was no formal, standardized curriculum to facilitate the implementation of the Leadership Series in communities. Information for the curriculum was compiled, drafted, edited and formatted in close collaboration and partnership with young adults and agency members, and it is written in an attempt to be both engaging and informative for a wide range of implementers including young adult leaders, supporting staff, and caregivers. In order to bridge the gap between research and practice, it is necessary not only to seek ways in which evidence-based practice can be more effectively implemented, but also to bolster promising programming to a place where it can be standardized, disseminated, and evaluated. The Leadership Series curriculum is a critical first step in this process.