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VISN 5 MIRECC - Ending Self Stigma (ESS) Resources & Manual


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ESS Ending Self-Stigma

What is Self Stigma?

Internalized (or self) stigma is a harmful effect of the societal stigmatization of mental health problems. Experiencing stigma can cause people to absorb these stereotypes into their beliefs about themselves. This interferes greatly with their morale, wellness, recovery and treatment.

What is Ending Self Stigma (ESS)?

Ending Self Stigma (ESS) is a 9 session group program designed to help people experiencing mental health problems to resist internalized stigma and its harmful effects, through practical personalized strategies.

It is designed to be delivered in 9 weekly 75-90 minute sessions, by one or two mental health provider and/or peer facilitators. It is most appropriate for psychosocial rehabilitation programs, VA PRRCs, mental health clinics, mental health consumer-run centers, and similar settings.

For a full copy of the 2016 ESS manual and related materials so you can offer ESS at your site click HERE

Questions? Contact


A recent study evaluated a version of Ending Self-Stigma for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (ESS-P)

  • For more information or if you are interested in receiving the ESS-P manual so you can offer ESS-P at your site, please contact Dr. Amy Drapalski at;
  • You can also read a recent issue of the VISN 5 MIRECC Link to learn more about the study with ESS-P;
  • Click here to read the study abstract!


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