Step Up understands that the most efficient way to reduce harm, prevent relapse, and foster recovery is to orient care around each member’s needs.

Individualized service coordination, on-staff psychiatrists and nurses for medication and care, transportation, and personal life skills coaching empower members to achieve self-determined goals. Step Up also offers weekly support groups that cover a range of topics from storytelling to managing medications, from yoga to money management. Members are free to opt into or out of any service at any time.

Professional staff, some of whom are Peer Advocates (individuals who have experienced mental health conditions and/or homelessness and are in the process of recovery), provide assistance to members as they achieve these goals.

Client-Run Center (CRC)

Through Step Up’s Client-Run Center (CRC) at Step Up on Second, peers seek to engage members who are withdrawn and/or struggling with symptoms preventing them from actively seeking support. With peer-support, these members are more likely to be encouraged to access treatment. Members also meet weekly in the Member Advisory Council (MAC). The MAC provides a forum for feedback and problem-solving. Volunteering is also an essential component of Step Up member participation.

Peer groups cover a broad range of social, education, creative, and informational topics. An active monthly member class schedule offers over sixty peer support groups with topics including learning how to tell your story; computer basics; managing medications; yoga; techniques for job interviews; and money management.

How to Become a Member

Potential members can come in for an initial screening between 8:30am – 1:00pm Monday – Thursday to Step Up On Second at 1328 Second Street, Santa Monica, CA 90401.

After the screening, you will receive an appointment for an intake. The only documentation that is needed is the proof of diagnosis.

After completion of the intake appointment, the potential member becomes a provisional member for 30 days with access to all general services: meals, groups, showers, laundry, referrals, and support. After the 30-day provisional membership, members can request additional services.

Step Up is open daily 8:30 am to 5:00 pm Monday-Friday and closed on some holidays.


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