May 2022

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We are excited that May is Mental Health Awareness Month! The month-long celebration focuses on the positive aspects of taking care of ourselves because self-love is everything! Additionally, the stigma around mental health is lessened every time we talk about it!

At RPSV we champion mental health, substance use, and homelessness recovery as we

meet people where they are and provide a safe place for them to recover and move

forward toward the life of their dreams. We literally help turn pain into power for those we serve.

Do you do anything to celebrate Mental Health Awareness Month? If you do, please share your celebrations with us, we'd love to hear! RPSV has several special activities planned throughout the month. We hope you can join us! 

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Celebrating In Style!

On May 13, RPSV, in conjunction with several other nonprofits in Northern Virginia, in concert with the Fairfax-Falls Church Community Services Board, hosted the 21st Annual Pathways to Wellness Conference. This free, virtual event was so uplifting as peers came together to celebrate mental health recovery as a collective. More than 100 people joined and we had registrants from as far away as Australia! It truly was awe-inspiring! (See the event flyer below to see what you missed if you didn't attend.) Please mark your calendars today for next May's event (date TBD)! #soworthit!

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RPSV's Joel Franks hosted one of the seven riveting workshops during the conference. Joel's presentation was on Rent Readiness which focused on using positive and assertive communication to live well with your housemate(s). Joel is a staffer at RPSV's Consumer Wellness Center. Great job, Joel!

Peter Galloway from RPSV's Reston Wellness Center was also featured during the conference. Peter filmed a powerful video about the singer James Taylor and his journey through recovery. Wow. It was just so good! Way to represent, Peter! Superb job!

A Look At Our Centers Last Month

Annandale: In His Own Words: From long-time participant MG: “I am so thankful and grateful to have the chance to participate in CWC’s programs. They are so motivational, passionate, and supportive. The Peers Helping Peers model has made a very big impact on my exciting transformation, I am so inspired. The staff here have been so helpful and make me feel important. This place is the perfect solution for my wellness and that is why I consistently keep coming. Thank you for your support!”




Outreach! RPSV is so happy to have recently connected with a wonderful person in the community, Tania 

Bougebrayel Cohn- Community Engagement and Resilience Manager for Arlington County. We are happy to partner with her and her team to help those we serve.

In April, Tania kindly dropped by RPSV's Arlington location with 165 Rapid COVID tests for participants.


(Pictured: Tania dropping off materials to APHR Peer Coordinator Valerie Miller and team.)

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Pictured below: Artwork that adorns the walls of Arlington's center. The gentleman featured in the middle (top) is a brilliant artist participant! #sotalented




In April, participants and staff alike were "Hoppy" to see the Spring weather! Participants have rejoiced at being able to eat and drink in the center while still maintaining social distancing.


There has also been such fantastic collaboration in the peer support groups with participants sharing their artistic skills with each other! During one group session, participants shared what makes them happy and grateful. (See below.)



Also in April, staff were able to collaborate with another agency to help a homeless woman who felt trapped and alone. She needed housing for herself and her three children. MPRC staff were able to work with her caseworker and share resources for housing. MPRC staff said it was one of the most rewarding experiences to see this woman who felt broken and alone, leave our Center feeling relieved and hopeful! #phenomenal!


Reston: A special story from participant ML:

“As an individual with mental health issues, even as a doctor (my husband, many of my friends, and some colleagues are also doctors or medical researchers), I find it difficult to understand the condition I have.”

“RWC gives participants like me strong support, education, and food supplies which really helps us and our families.”

“Most mental health conditions cause a lot of problems within the workplace and among family relationships. RWC staff have

invaluable knowledge and can help us learn to move on and gain skills to improve those issues. Sometimes just regrouping and taking time to work on recovery can empower people to continue to work or go to school.”

“RWC is a safe place where individuals with mental health issues receive complete respect, truth, and get real support from people who really care. Thank you, RWC!”


South County Alexandria: MP, a SCRDIC participant has been instrumental in voluntarily helping around the facility. He continually fixes our pool sticks and cleans up whenever he sees something that needs attention. Recently, MP secured a job and moved into his first apartment! MP stated he will continue to attend SCRDIC after he is settled in. The staff at SCRDIC enjoys being a part of the Mt. Vernon/Lee community and are happy to serve the participants who seek our assistance to the best of our ability.


RPSV's Virtual Groups Changing Lives

RPSV's virtual groups continue to grow as more and more people learn of their availability. During a recent session, a participant shared how grateful they are the groups are available. "I was having a really bad day and I am so happy I joined today. I feel SO much better now, thank you!" #lovely

Join us online! Our virtual groups are available every day but Sunday. See our monthly calendar below:

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In The Community


Donors in Northern Virginia continue to create Homeless Survival Kits for those we serve without a home. The kits are relished by recipients who often cry when they receive them because someone took the time to make something just for them!

Last month RPSV received kits from new corporate donor Navy Federal Credit Union and kind people in the community (like Kosta K.) Thank you for taking action to help those we serve!

To learn more about how you can help homeless adults in your community, please visit or email Monika. 

Time To Get Your Poetry and Prose On!

Join RPSV for its upcoming Poetry Slam and Readings event coming June 25. To perform, please email Monika today. Spots will be assigned on a first-come, first-come basis! It's going to be a blast!

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Register Today!

As seen on our social media sites: Graphic by volunteer Shreeya S.


The Write Stuff

There are several new blogs on our website written by volunteers and RPSV staff. Check them out if you have a moment.

Want to write for our blog? Email us today!

Feed The Hungry: RPSV is currently hosting a canned vegetable drive to provide healthy alternatives to those we serve via our daily meal program. Join the effort! Learn how below.

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Get Involved: RPSV welcomes in-kind, volunteer, and financial support to help us meet the needs of those we serve. To donate, please visit our website. For in-kind and in-person volunteer opportunities, please contact Tonya.

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