GPS Group Peer Support is based on 20 years of experience in the field of perinatal mental health and social justice. As founders of the non-profit organization, MotherWoman, Annette Cycon and Liz Friedman raised awareness about the intersection of poverty, race and marginalization with maternal mental health. They trained providers across disciplines about perinatal emotional complications, developed a model for community-based perinatal support coalitions and advocated for family policy at state and national levels. At the heart of their work, they developed a specialized support group model for women at risk for, or experiencing perinatal emotional complications, including depression and anxiety. Their goal was to break down barriers to care and increase access to community-based support services for women in need.
Because of the increasing need for affordable, accessible, culturally-centered, community-based mental health services for more diverse populations, Annette and Liz launched GPS Group Peer Support in 2017. They now train professional and peer leaders from diverse populations to facilitate the refined, evidence and trauma-informed GPS support group model to wider audiences. GPS is culturally adaptable and co-created. It is being successfully implemented in different settings and languages with trusted leaders within the communities being served. GPS Group Peer Support is being utilized with diverse populations including:
- Faith-based Communities
- First Generation College Students
- International women’s health
- Men, youth, fathers, non-binary and non-gestational parents
- Parents facing challenges including perinatal mental health complications, teen parenting, incarceration, bereavement, and the educational and developmental needs of children ages 0-3