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Southwest Behavioral & Health Services Celebrates College of Wellness Graduation
By Jennifer Schwegman - Monday Jan 30, 2023
(PHOENIX – Jan. 30, 2023) Southwest Behavioral & Health Services’ College of Wellness (formerly Recovery College) was established in 2016 by volunteer staff to provide valuable training to direct care staff and peer support workers in wellbeing concepts and strategies. On Jan. 12, 2023, 35 participants graduated from the program.

The College of Wellness is part of a global movement of Recovery Colleges pioneering mental health interventions that support people living with mental health challenges by collaboratively providing educational opportunities in addition to, or instead of, clinical approaches.

According to Clinical Director Abra Arlinsky, the success of the College of Wellness has resulted in the next level of educational opportunities for enhancing wellness and wellbeing for staff and members.

“These classes assist participants with various approaches surrounding self-management, health promotion, and wellbeing. To earn the Certified Wellness Partner designation, participants must successfully complete courses on topics such as resilience, optimism, exercise and nutrition, holistic health, and expressive arts.”

The content for the course was created utilizing feedback from persons served, peer support workers, and SB&H staff and leadership. Classes are team-taught by members of the College of Wellness, participants, and graduates.

Following the graduation ceremony, SB&H celebrated the dedication of the Dr. Bob Bohanske Center for Clinical Excellence. “Dr. Bob, as he was known, was a man dedicated to enhancing the quality of care for all people, and their access to it,” said SB&H CEO Steven Sheets.

“He knew that focusing on educating and training direct-care providers was essential. His vision for Southwest Behavioral & Health Services was to build a premier clinical training institution in Arizona, and beyond. His tireless efforts, which never faltered, were to meet and surpass a level of excellence that is now demonstrated through what will now be known as the Dr. Bob Bohanske Center for Clinical Excellence.” Bohanske passed away in 2021.

About Southwest Behavioral & Health Services:
Phoenix-based Southwest Behavioral & Health Services (SB&H) is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that provides compassionate primary care, substance abuse, and mental health services that enhance lives and improve communities. Services include outpatient mental health treatment and psychiatric services, including medication monitoring; assistance for persons with addictions; intensive inpatient care for persons in crisis; residential housing, in-home and supported housing services; prevention services, community outreach, and school-based counseling; services for individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder; and four opioid replacement clinics. Southwest Behavioral & Health Services has locations throughout the greater Phoenix Metro area and in rural Maricopa, Gila, Mohave, Coconino, and Yavapai counties. For more information about SB&H programs, services, and ways to help, visit