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Good morning and welcome to the 24th annual NAMI Texas state conference. Many of you already know me, and I see so many familiar faces……I am Robin Peyson, the Executive Director of NAMI Texas.

I want to thank everyone for being here today. We appreciate your using your resources-your time and money, and choosing to join us here in San Antonio. We are glad to see you, and invite you to celebrate this year’s theme - Roadmap to Recovery.

So, what does that word really meant….Recovery. Actually, there has been a great deal of dialogue on this topic. In the world of mental health and mental illness, it is a relatively new concept……20 or even 10 years ago, there was little talk of mental illness and recovery. A  new generation of medications helped make this conversation possible, but how did we get to where we are today, where the concept of recovery has entered our understanding of mental illness and changed not only the context by which we define mental illness, but our expectations?

In its final report in 2003 or 2004, the New Freedom Commission on Mental Health called for nothing short of fundamental transformation of the mental health care delivery system in the United States-from one dictated by outmoded bureaucratic and financial incentives to one driven by consumer and family needs that focuses on building resilience and facilitating recovery. In fact, Recovery is cited as the "single most important goal" for the mental health service delivery system.

To clearly define recovery, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration partnered with six other Federal agencies and convened the National Consensus Conference on Mental Health Recovery and Mental Health Systems Transformation on December 16-17, 2004.

Over 110 expert panelists participated, including mental health consumers, family members, providers, advocates, researchers, academicians, managed care representatives, accreditation organization representatives, State and local public officials, and others. A series of technical papers and reports were commissioned that examined topics such as recovery across the lifespan, definitions of recovery, recovery in cultural contexts, the intersection of mental health and addictions recovery, and the application of recovery at individual, family, community, provider, organizational, and systems levels. The following consensus statement was derived from expert panelist deliberations on the findings.

Mental health recovery is a journey of healing and transformation enabling a person with a mental health problem to live a meaningful life in a community of his or her choice while striving to achieve his or her full potential.

The 10 Fundamental Components of Recovery

Self-Direction: Consumers lead, control, exercise choice over, and determine their own path of recovery by optimizing autonomy, independence, and control of resources to

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