An Introduction to Peer Support
The term peer support means different things to different people so to begin the course I’d like you to open the workbook. You’re going to mind map or write down all the ideas you have on page 3. There’s an example of what a Mindmap looks like on p2 which you might find useful to guide you
According to the Mental Health Charity, Mind, Peer Support is when people use their own experience to help one another.
Sounds simple enough, doesn’t it? However, peer support isn’t simply about offering advice to others; it’s about making connections with people who have similar lived experiences, finding the best ways in which to support each other.
Returning to p3 of your workbook – in a different colour add what you think the benefits of peer support are
For example you might think that peer support is about ‘sharing experiences with others ‘. And the benefit of this is that it will reduce feelings of isolation
Watch the video below and complete p4 of your workbook
Summarising the benefits of peer support
- Improves wellbeing
- Reduces isolation
- Spur to action
As we have seen throughout this lesson there are many benefits to peer support. It can improve people’s sense of wellbeing, their ability to connect with others, increase their sense of hope and improve their ability to make decisions and take action.
It is also a powerful tool which can be used for campaigning around specific issues, bringing people together who have a shared passion or interest
What does peer support mean to you?
In 2020 Samwell asked these questions to performers that they surveyed in the midst of Covid-19. These were some of the responses
“ Feeling supported. Feeling listened to”
“Feeling safe and being able to express my emotions”
“A feeling of supporting, inspiring and uplifting each other, and feeling part of a community”
You have now reached the end of lesson 1 – Congratulations. Feel free to take a break here or move straight onto lesson 2