FacilitatorsWRAP UsersOrganizations and Agencies

What is a Wellness Recovery Action Plan® (WRAP®) and how do I use it?

The Wellness Recovery Action Plan®, or WRAP®, is an evidence based practice that is used world-wide by people who are dealing with mental health challenges as well as medical conditions. Diabetes, weight gain, pain management, addictions, smoking, and trauma are just some of the many life challenges that can benefit from WRAP. WRAP can also be used as a framework to guide relationships in peer support, recovery groups, agencies, and organizations.

WRAP is being used in schools, prisons, hospitals, and veterans’ facilities. It is used with people of all ages who want to attain the highest possible level of wellness. It was originally developed by a group of people who lived with mental health difficulties and were searching for ways to resolve their wellness issues. WRAP was their answer, and it can be used by anyone looking to develop a plan to manage a path to wellness.

WRAP involves listing your personal resources, your Wellness Tools, and then using those resources to develop an Action Plan to use in specific situations which you determine. WRAP is adaptable for any situation and can include a Crisis Plan or Advance Directive.

WRAP is for Life! – It is for everyone, anytime, and for any of life's challenges.

 WRAP Overview                              

[video with Mary Ellen Copeland]      Click here to find out more about getting started with WRAP®

July Book Special

July Book Special

Mutuality and Listening Differently

In the last two brief articles we talked about listening from a position of not knowing as well as listening for the untold story. In this article we’ll talk a bit about mutuality.

Good questions are key in listening. But if you don’t share your own views and stories, the conversation can seem more like therapy than a conversation between peers. Knowing how and when to share your story while keeping a connection is critical.

Okay, so you’re doing WRAP with Julie who shares with you that she’s just written a paper on people who self-injury. She talks about her own experience with self-injury in terms of symptoms. You asked her what the self-injury means to her and she said the doctor told her it was a way of getting attention and Julie agrees. Your blood is beginning to boil but you think, how can I maintain this connection while still adding my piece?

So you say, “You know there was a time in my life when I was told, and I believed that cutting myself was just about trying to get attention. I felt ashamed which only added to the shame of cutting. When someone finally said to me, “what’s wrong with wanting some attention?” I realized that I was contributing to the already existing shame.”

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Mini-WRAPs for Special Times

In a recent peer counseling session with a friend, we came up with the idea of Mini-WRAP's for Special Times. I was sharing my frustration with trying to recover from a serious medical procedure along with the challenge of moving--both of these making rather difficult times for me. My friend was providing lots of support to a family member and adjusting to a new work situation. And together, as so often happens with peer support, we came up with the idea of Mini-WRAPs for special or "distinctive" times.  Peer counseling is a great way to figure things out--"two minds are usually better than one". I use it often when I come to a personal impasse and can't figure out what to do next. And WRAP is a great way to figure out a process for achieving whatever you might be working on at the time. 

I thought I might use a MY WRAP for this. In fact, I thought I should keep a stack of them on hand for these special times. My friend thought about doing hers on her phone app or in a small notebook she carries in her purse. I could use "Build Your Own WRAP" which is what I use for my WRAP that guides my life every day. 

Mary Ellen’s Mini-WRAP for Moving

WRAP Goes to Washington!

WRAP Around the World 2015
August 24-26, 2015 - Washington DC

WRAP Around the WorldThe Copeland Center has announced the upcoming WRAP Around the World Conference - WRAP and Recovery Books is excited to be joining the fun! We hope you can attend this grassroots conference, which brings together the WRAP community.

Conference Special Features Include:

  • Keynote address by Mary Ellen Copeland, PhD
  • Empower Presenters on The Power and Importance of Language and Trauma Recovery
  • WRAP for People with Developmental Distinctions
  • Forensic WRAP
  • WRAP in Systems of Care
  • Wellness Tools

Join Mary Ellen Copeland for a reception overlooking the historic scenery of Washington, DC. The reception will have a meet and greet, music, food, and beverages. Come watch the sunset with friends in wellness. Both conference attendees and those living in the area are welcome to get tickets.

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Highly Recommended WRAP Course

"I highly recommend this course to anyone who teaches or is considering implementing a WRAP program or any other evidence-based program. I also recommend it for Advanced Level WRAP Facilitators who might find themselves advocating for WRAP programs or their expansion. It offers lessons learned and valuable strategies for helping get WRAP started and ensuring its continuance."

- Mary Ellen Copeland

Course Description:
WRAP GroupHow often have you heard, “We know what works, but we don’t know how to scale it up?” Translation: WRAP Group evidence into daily practice is a common struggle across human service systems. If you’ve faced this challenge or if you’ve wondered why public systems struggle to offer recovery programs more broadly, this online course is for you. The faculty discusses common barriers to introducing evidence-based practices with fidelity, as well as how to sustain them as part of mental health systems change. Learners are introduced to the stages of program implementation, important policy issues, and scale-up strategies that have been used successfully in public health and mental health. Two entire classes focus on WRAP as an example of how knowledge generated through science can be introduced on a wide scale in real-world settings. Register today to spark your thinking and learn proven strategies for implementing evidence-based programs, including WRAP, on a larger-scale.

This course is eligible for Continuing Education credit for those who want it. At a cost of $5.00, it is the best bargain around, and this fee can be waived by following the instructions. You can read more and access it at: http://www.cmhsrp.uic.edu/health/ebp-wrap-course.asp


WRAP is Born

As a happy birthday present to WRAP, I worked with Em Richards, Jane Winterling and Ed Anthes to develop a video, WRAP Retrospective, that chronicles the development of WRAP. It includes many old pictures and some video footage. I think you will like a lot.  I hope you enjoy it; Please do let me know. Share it with everyone.

Since WRAP was developed in 1997 it has spread all over the world and continues to grow everyday as a tool to enrich and empower lives. Stories have been shared,WRAP is Born friendships formed and communities have been built. People have reclaimed their lives and have become the way they always wanted to be. They are doing the things they had always hoped they would be able to do. Mental health and health care systems are incorporating the Key Concepts, WRAP and WRAP Values and Ethics into everything they do.

Following is an article I wrote in 1997. It continues the story from "Getting Well: the Seeds of WRAP". It describes the process of how the part of WRAP were formed 18 years ago.

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Mary Ellen Copeland and her staff cannot address personal mental health problems and issues. We care very much about your concerns but we must focus our efforts on education and resource development. For more information on how to get help for yourself or the people you are supporting, please use the resources on this website.

© 1995-2015 Mary Ellen Copeland, PhD All Rights Reserved