Researchers at Boston University’s Center for Psychiatric Rehabilitation, in collaboration with the National Association of Peer Supporters (NAPS), conducted a survey of US-based Peer Support Specialists from May 18, 2020-June 22, 2020 in order to assess the impact of the novel coronavirus/COVID-19 on the peer support workforce, including job tasks, challenges and supports. A total of 1,280 peer support specialists (paid and volunteer) qualified for, consented and responded to the online survey. Individuals from all 50 states responded. Respondents were predominately female (69%) and white (73%), with a mean age of 50 years.
iNAPS has reorganizied and rebranded as the National Association of Peer Supporters (N.A.P.S.). With this change N.A.P.S. has a new logo (see above) and is now officially the International Association of Peer Supporters, Inc doing business as the National Association of Peer Supporters, Inc.
To align more closely with the mission of N.A.P.S., we will prioritize the development of a professional association of peer support specialists by recruiting and uniting peer support workers as members of the professional association. N.A.P.S. will direct its focus to providing services to their members and promoting the interests of peer support specialists.
N.A.P.S. will continue conversations with peer support workers in other countries to explore the establishment of an international coalition and continue to welcome individuals from across the world as both members and volunteers. N.A.P.S. will also build strong partnerships with international organizations, participate in global gatherings and coalitions, and work to advance collaborative, peer support initiatives world-wide.
N.A.P.S. leadership is moving forward with a laser-focused approach to growing and supporting their membership, and addressing workforce development issues that impose barriers to the growth of the peer support profession. Over the coming months the N.A.P.S. board will evaluate their capacity to search for and hire an Executive Director.