Peer Specialist Certification

What is Peer Support?

Peer Support is a system of giving and receiving help founded on key principles of respect, shared responsibility, and mutual agreement of what is helpful. Peer Support is not based on psychiatric models and diagnostic criteria. It is about understanding another’s situation empathetically through the shared experience of emotional and psychological pain. For more information visit SAMHSA.

What is a Certified Recovery Peer Specialist (CRPS)?

A Certified Recovery Peer Specialist (CRPS) is defined as an individual who:

  • Self-identifies as a person who has direct personal experience living in recovery from mental health and/or substance use conditions,
  • Has a desire to use their experiences to help others with their recovery,
  • Is willing to publicly identify as a person living in recovery for the purpose of educating, role modeling, and providing hope to others about the reality of recovery, and
  • Has had the proper training and experience to work in a provider role.

Do I need to become certified to work as a Peer Specialist?


Where can I get a job as a Certified Recovery Peer Specialist?

Check our Employment Database for the most current job listings for Certified Recovery Peer Specialists positions around the state.  

How do I become a Certified Recovery Peer Specialist?

The Certified Recovery Peer Specialist (CRPS) is a designation awarded to individuals who demonstrate competency in the field of peer-to-peer recovery support. Competency is gained through a combination of education and experience and earning a professional credential is a multi-step process. For a complete breakdown of the requirements, check out this candidate guide. Below are the requirements to become a Certified Recovery Peer Specialist:

  • Submit an application found here 
  • Proof of High School Diploma or Equivalent
  • 40 total clock hours of training within the last 5 years divided among the following content areas:
    • Advocacy- 4 hours minimum
    • Mentoring- 6 hours minimum
    • Recovery Support- 6 hours minimum
    • Professional Responsibility- 4 hours minimum
    • Electives- 20 hours minimum

We regularly post training opportunities here. The Florida Certification Board has a list of training opportunities that may qualify here. Please note, your hours must come from an approved Florida Certification Board Training and Education Provider. To find a provider, click here

  • 500 hours of supervised work and/or volunteer experience providing peer-to-peer recovery support services in any of the following domains: Advocacy, Mentoring, and Recovery Support (within the last 5 years) documented on this form
  • Applicants must attest to the type of lives experience that makes them eligible to serve as a peer to others. This attestation determines the endorsement(s) applied to the CRPS credential.
    • CRPS-A: lived experience as an adult who has been in recovery for a minimum of 2 years from a substance use or mental health condition
    • CRPS-F: lived experience as a family member or caregiver to another individual who has or is in recovery from a substance use or mental health condition
    • CRPS-V: lived experience as a veteran of the armed forces who has been in recovery for a minimum of 2 years from a substance use or mental health condition
    • CRPS-Y: lived experience as an individual currently between the ages of 18 and 29 who experienced a significant life challenge(s) during the ages of 14-25 and is living a wellness and/or recovery-oriented lifestyle for at least 2 years
  • One (1) Supervisory Recommendation for Certification, the form can be found here.
    • Supervisory Recommendation: A Supervisory recommendation is provided by an individual who is in a position that includes supervisory responsibilities defined by the organization’s published job description. If the applicant is working in a non-paid, volunteer capacity, the individual responsible for overseeing the applicant’s volunteer staff is a qualified supervisor (FCB, 2015, p. 19).
  • One (1) Character-Personal Recommendation for Certification, the form can be found here.
    • Character-Personal Recommendation: A Character-Personal recommendation is provided by an individual who knows the applicant in a personal capacity. Character-Personal recommendations are often provided by business acquaintances, customers or clients, teachers, trainers, professors, friends or neighbors. The Character-Personal recommendation should discuss the applicant’s traits, such as his or her personality, character, integrity, dependability, and/or insights into work habits, talents, and skills. While the recommendation will primary discuss the applicant’s personality, it should give the FCB an idea of the type of individual applying for the certification as a Recovery Peer Advocate (FCB, 2015, p. 19).
  • Must have a clean criminal history for a minimum of 3-years prior to application for certification, including release from all sanctions.
  • Must read and sign an attestation agreeing to comply with the FCB Code of Ethical & Professional Conduct found here
  • Pass the Florida Certified Recovery Peer Specialist Exam (passing score is 65%; or 65 correct out of 100 questions). A free, online study guide is available here
  • 10 hours of continuing education per year. Training content must be related to at least one of the CRPS performance domains. Annual renewal is on June 30th of each calendar year.
  • There are fees associated with the application, test, and criminal background report, if needed. For those in financial need, scholarships are available to cover the cost of the application and certification exam fees. 
    • Application Fee- $100
    • Certification Exam Fee- $65
    • Reinstatement Fee- $150
    • Renewal Fee (Annual)- $75

For more information on the certification process visit The Florida Certification Board.

More coming soon…


Peer Support Coaltion of Florida, Inc.
© 2017 Peer Support Coalition of Florida