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Invitation to Change Approach Information Session Overview

March 29, 2024

What is the Invitation to Change (ITC) Approach?

The Invitation to Change model was developed by CMC: Foundation for Change and focuses on building communication skills, improving family relationships and self-care for families. Support groups can be facilitated by paid or volunteer community members, peer support specialists or clinicians. The Invitation to Change model and strategies are drawn from three evidence-based approaches—Community Reinforcement Approach and Family Training (CRAFT), Motivational Interviewing (MI) and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT).

This is a joint project with the Great Lakes ATTC at University of Wisconsin, Northwest ATTC at University of Washington, Mountain Plains ATTC at University of North Dakota and University of Nevada Reno, Southeast ATTC at Morehouse School of Medicine, Mid America ATTC and the ATTC Network Coordinating Office at University of Missouri Kansas City.

How did it begin?

South Southwest ATTC is engaged in a multi-year collaborative effort to provide family members of people with substance use challenges access to evidence informed, responsive and culturally appropriate resources. Our efforts began in 2022 in response to needs identified in the South Southwest ATTC’s service region – HHS Region 6, which includes Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas.

In 2022-2023, South Southwest ATTC partnered with the National Hispanic and Latino Addiction Technology Transfer Center, The African American Behavioral Health Center of Excellence and local community representatives to conduct a review of existing resources for family members. In addition, we hosted consultations directly with family members and loved ones of people who use substances about their experiences and needs.

The resulting report from the consultation indicated that family members are available and steadfast supporters of their loved ones.

They are actively working to find treatment and recovery supports for family members facing substance use challenges. They are strengthened by extended family networks and faith communities, but they also experience significant isolation and shame, and frequently struggle to find effective resources. 

To expand resources and support for families, South Southwest ATTC is partnering with other regional ATTCs to establish and nurture the growth ITC Family Support groups in our region.

What is the status today?

On February 29, 2024 the South Southwest ATTC and their partners hosted The Invitation to Change Approach Informational Session for over 90 attendees. 

The session began with an introduction to the audience to the ATTC Network, an international, multidisciplinary resource for professionals in the addiction’s treatment and recovery services field by Jeanne Pulvermacher, Great Lakes ATTC. 

Then, Meg Murray, Executive Director of CMC Foundation for Change gave a brief overview the framework based on science and kindness, designed for families and the professionals who support them, known as the ITC model. She explained the importance of family support for someone facing substance use challenges. As well as understanding how shame can impact the individual, their family, and their journey. 

Kris Kelly of the Great Lakes ATTC wrapped up the Informational Session, by explaining the ATTC Sponsorship opportunities for community organizations. Organizations interested in implementing the ITC model can apply to receive ITC Facilitation training and support to host ITC Recovery Support Groups as outlined below.

Training Commitment: (July-September 2024)

  • 2-6 hours for planning meetings
  • Virtual ITC facilitator trainings to include:
    • 2 facilitators (volunteer community members and/or staff)
    • 1 individual (volunteer community member and/or staff) affiliated with organization who will manage the implementation of ITC group, and provide guidance and support to the facilitators

Support Group Implementation Commitment: (October 2024-August 2025)

  • Facilitate one 15-week ITC support group for family members and loved ones. Responsibilities include: 
  • Schedule 15-week ITC support group (1 session per week)
  • Identify location for ITC support group –in-person or virtual
  • Recruit family members and loved ones to attend ITC support group
  • Provide logistical support and supplies for ITC support group
  • Provide oversight, guidance, and support for facilitators

Estimated time commitment: 60 hours

  • Collaborate with Regional ATTC and CMC: Foundation to receive technical assistance and support as needed during implementation and facilitation of the ITC support group. 

Estimated time commitment: 25 hours

Click the image to watch the full recording of Informational Session from 2/29/24.

For those interested who work and/or reside in SAMHSA Region 6 states Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Texas, can contact Kelly Pierrend at [email protected].

How to Apply: Fill out and submit this google form.

To learn more about training dates and organizational commitments, please see the new webpage. Deadline to apply is April 19, 2024.

All selections will be made by May 1, 2024. 

Contributing Center(s):