Welcome to the Mental Health Special Interest Section!


Our SIS wants to serve OTPs currently working in mental health settings, those who address mental health in non-mental-health settings, and those who wish to begin practicing in mental health.

 In 2016, our SIS created an advocacy group called NC Occupational Therapy Alliance for Mental Health Promotion, or NCOTAMHP. Since that time we have worked together on goals of increasing the presence of occupational therapy in community mental health settings. If you are interested in participating in our advocacy group, please email Caity at [email protected] or join our Facebook group: NC OT Alliance for Mental Health Promotion

 Advocacy info: please see our NCOTAMHP Newcomers’ Guide for more information on our advocacy efforts, including information on QP status for OTs and OTAs, our efforts with the Transitions to Community Living Initiative, Medicaid Transformation, and more!



*Chair Name/Credentials: Caity Bunch, MS, OTR/L

*Email: [email protected]

*OT Education: M.S. in Occupational Therapy, UNC Chapel Hill 2011 

*Current Setting/Title: HomeLink Occupational Therapist at UNC’s Center for Excellence in Community Mental Health: community mental health/housing support team.

*Previous Experience: Psychosocial rehabilitation fellowship at Durham VA; inpatient psychiatry at Central Regional Hospital; home health; Durham VA housing/homelessness team

 *Clinical/Professional Interests: Expansion of OT services in community mental health and particularly the presence of OT on community mental health teams; OT in primary care/chronic health condition management; use of motivational interviewing; housing rights and advocacy.

*Meaningful Roles and Occupations: Wife, friend, OT advocate. I love playing disc golf, reading, listening to music, and hiking at the Eno, and I just started doing punch needle crafting!

*Additional Information: NCOTA and AOTA member; NCOTA Award of Outstanding Practice in the area of Mental Health, 2018


Chair: Darren Peters MOTR/L BCMH  

*Email: [email protected]   

*OT Education: Msc Occupational Therapy

*Current Setting/Title: Inpatient mental health and UNC / Clinical Specialist Occupational Therapist

*Previous Experience: Occupational Therapy in a forensic mental health setting in London, occupational therapy in a community mental health setting in Chicago.

*Clinical/Professional Interests: Eating disorders, mental health advocacy to move contemporary occupational therapy mental health practice to a community setting providing primary/preventative health care to reduce the disparities in holistic health care access. 

*Meaningful Roles and Occupations: Current member of the UNC Family Patient Advisory Committee. Board Certified in Mental Health by the American Occupational Therapy Association.


Durham VA starting recruitment for OT Fellowship Programs. More information here.