What is a Peer Support Group for?
OSI-CAN provides Peer Support Groups for our target demographic; Currently serving and former members of the military, RCMP, and all Public Safety Personnel. Operational Stress Injuries can occur when a person directly experiences or witnesses a traumatic event. This can also happen with repeated exposure to traumatic situations and details. Listen to Tom, a Peer Support Leader, about this:
Having been through Peer Support myself and now as a Peer Supporter, I can say that the experience of being in a Peer Support meeting is very low pressure. After all, you are already feeling enough pressure on yourself as it is while dealing with an OSI. Even attending a meeting without speaking is known to be helpful to your mental health and it took quite a while before I trusted the people in the group so I didn’t say anything until I felt comfortable.
Peer support is emotional and practical support between two people who share a common experience, such as a mental health challenge or illness. A Peer Supporter has lived through that similar experience, and is trained to support others. (https://peersupportcanada.ca/)
Peer support is recognized and highly valued as an integrated component of the mental health system, accessible to all individuals and family members affected by mental health challenges and illness. Our peer support certification is designed for individuals with lived experience of a mental health and/or addiction challenge or mental illness who are supporting others with a mental health and/or addiction challenge or mental illness. (https://peersupportcanada.ca/)
For Further Detail:
Read up on PTSD or OSI in the OSI-CAN Manual
Our mission is to inspire hope and contribute to the continuous well-being and recovery process of Veterans and Front Line Protectors across Canada.
We seek to empower and encourage them to strive for recovery through peer and professional support while creating greater public awareness.
We at OSI-CAN do not see PTSD or Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder as a Disorder, we see it as an Injury you can recover from. If you are suffering from the symptoms of an Occupational or Operational Stress Injury, then a PTSD or PTSI diagnosis is not required to get our help
The target demographic of OSI-CAN are but are not limited to: former and serving members of the Canadian Armed Forces, Allied Armed Forces, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and Frontline Protectors --- which include Municipal Police Services, CN Police Services, Emergency Medical Services, Fire Protection Services, Wildland Firefighters, Hospital Trauma personnel, Nurses, healthcare Workers, Social Workers, Animal Control Officers, Coroners, Indigenous Emergency Management, Victim Services Personnel, Emergency Communications Specialist, Corrections Officers, “Volunteer” First Responders, Conservation Officers, Aboriginal Emergency Services personnel, Tow Truck drivers who clean up accident scenes and their spouses/partners. This demographic was chosen due to the commonality of experiences they share through the service they provide to the country and community. We have a special interest and support volunteer first responders as they are not eligible for programs such as Workers' Compensation.