The Office of Consumer Advocates (OCA) started as a pilot program under the auspices of the Washington County Mental Health Authority (WCMHA) in 1993. The original office was located at 265 Mill Street, Hagerstown, MD during the direction of the late Winifred “Wini” DeHaven until the time of her death. OCA was incorporated in January of 1999 and formally established two peer run programs; OCA (A Peer Advocacy Program) and Soul Haven (A Drop-in/now Wellness & Recovery Center).
From its start with just five employees and a single office the OCA programs now span three Western Maryland Counties: Soul Haven (1999) located in Washington County, Hope Station (2008) located in Allegany County, and Mountain Haven (2011 initially Harvey House in 2001) located in Garrett County. All OCA programs continue to be peer run and operated while serving as an advocate to those working to achieve their personal wellness and recovery goals.