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Peer Support at Together

Peer support takes place when people with experience of mental distress support each other towards better wellbeing, as people of equal value and on a reciprocal basis, using their own lived experience as a tool for support.

We know from experience that peer support can help people to take huge strides forward in their recovery. People who have experienced mental health issues can offer privileged insight and understanding, and draw on their own experiences to help others. The support they give can be an extremely effective complement to support given by mental health professionals, or a lifeline to those for whom traditional mental health support has not worked.

We recognise the huge benefits of informal peer support, which has a long history and which we encourage to flourish in our services. As so many people have found peer support effective, we have worked alongside service users to create more “formal” peer support opportunities within our services. This means that we train people to act as Peer Supporters and provide the infrastructure they need to deliver this support safely and confidently. This includes supervision and support from a paid Peer Support Coordinator who themselves has experience of mental distress.

People with lived experience of mental distress play the lead role in developing our approach to peer support, including designing and delivering peer support training, and developing ways that peer support works in practice across Together.

Though the peer support each person gives or receives is unique and tailored to the individuals involved, all of Together’s peer support follows a set of core principles. These principles have been decided collectively by service users and Peer Supporters as part of a Peer Support Charter, and are at the heart of what is special and unique about our peer support. These principles are:

  • Safety and Trust
  • Being yourself
  • Hopefulness
  • Mutuality
  • Solidarity
  • Reducing stigma
  • Person-centred goals
  • Equality and empowerment
  • Independence
  • Strength and potential
  • Moving on
  • Companionship
  • Choice

Peer Support in Criminal Justice Services

Our Peer Supporters in our criminal justice services draw on their own experiences of mental  distress and the criminal justice system,  to support others overcome similar challenges.

We currently provide a Peer Support Service within our Community L&D, Together Wellbeing Pathway and RECONNECT projects. For more information please contact Rachel Atterbury or Anabel Cando.

Read more about peer support in our criminal justice services.

Peer Support Resources

Find out more

If you are interested in giving or receiving peer support, contact the Peer Support Coordinator in your area (see below for contact details). For more information about Together’s approach to peer support, or if there is not a Peer Support Coordinator in your area, please contact our Jackie Hardy.

Berkshire and Berkshire West Your Way
Peer Support Coordinator: Zoe Flack
Tel: 0118 9660240

Hampshire Recovery Services
Kirtling House, Wavelly House
Peer Support Coordinator: Cherie Smallbones
Tel: 07515 606 555

Hampshire West Housing and Support Service(Eastleigh, New Forest, Andover, Winchester)
Peer Support Coordinator: Danielle Stibbs
Tel: 07880 039 600

London – Liaison and Diversion
Liaison and Diversion London
This is peer support for people who have been in the criminal justice system
Peer Support Coordinator: Christine Pearson
Tel: 07880 191320

London – Together Wellbeing Pathway
This is peer support for people who are in the criminal justice system with a diagnosis of Personalist Disorder
Peer Support Co-ordinator: Adrian Tarka
Tel: 07872 128976

Norfolk Community Support
Peer Support and Volunteer Coordinators:

Southwark Wellbeing hub
Peer Support Coordinator: Nia Roberts
Tel: 07739 612449

Swale (Kent)
Swale Your Way
Peer Support and Volunteer Coordinator: Joanne Francis
Tel: 07880 039578

Willow Tree House
Peer Support Coordinator – Samiha Abdeldjebar
Tel: 07484 935499

Tamworth, Lichfield and East Staffordshire
Tamworth, Lichfield and East Staffordshire Your Way
Peer Support Coordinator: Kirstyn Marshall
Tel: 07484 532193

Wandsworth Your Way
(Covers areas including Wandsworth, Tooting, Putney, Roehampton, Battersea)

Peer Support Involvement Worker (for general enquiries about peer support)
Jackie Hardy
Tel: 07943 907703