You might not be too sure what Peer Support is or how it can help you so we wanted to explain in a bit more detail what it is and what is on offer here at Manchester Mind.
Peer Support groups provide a safe place for people to share, understand and give mutual support to other people who are struggling with their mental health. Peer Support provides a confidential place where people can have a chat without judgement. By sharing and understanding, we create better wellbeing, increased self-esteem and confidence.
What does this mean?
Peer Support for mental health problems has a long history in Manchester as an alternative to support from mainstream services. It is now being used within the NHS, with an emerging body of research that shows groups can help alleviate mental health problems, increase enjoyment from life, connection with others, levels of employment and rates of recovery.
Peer Support is different to other mental health services. It is set up on the idea that those with lived experience hold a lot of expertise around how they understand their own mental health. Even though you might struggle a lot, you likely to know what works for you and what does not. Sharing how you are doing and your coping strategies with others in a safe space, can help others and yourself, we call this the ‘mutuality’ of peer support.
Our Peer Support groups build a community of people going through similar experiences. We grow and learn together. We talk about our difficulties but also have time for lighter moments too, wanting to embrace the totality of what it means to be human. Our facilitators in these spaces have their own mental health experiences, this is different to the dynamic in normal services where the expert is the therapist/facilitator.
Our groups are available online and face-to-face for: