Grand Avenue Club is one of over 300 Clubhouses throughout the world that are part of the Clubhouse International network of Clubhouses. All of us have embraced "The International Standards for Clubhouse Programs," a powerful document of 37 principles that have already impacted the lives of thousands of Clubhouse members. The ideas that led to "The International Standards for Clubhouse Programs" began in NYC. However, the first version of the Standards was written by 10 Clubhouses in 1989. The document has undergone continuous revision by colleagues at Clubhouses throughout the world.
Accredited Clubhouses, including GAC, are currently considering revisions that have been submitted by Clubhouses like ours. GAC has always prioritized discussions about the Standards. In fact, GAC authored a popular book, "Together Everyone Achieves ClubHouse," (the TEACH manual), a guide for Clubhouses that is in use everywhere.
This past Monday, the first meeting of the new GAC Standards Review Committee took place. There were 14 attendees--members, staff, a board member, a volunteer, and a former staff member. We found the discussion exhilarating and plan on continuing our work via this committee and our weekly community meetings and daily unit meetings.
We are proud of our active engagement in an important process and a set of ideas that are becoming more empowering everyday for people who have experienced mental illness.