Mental health

A Helping Hand: Consultations With Service Users About Peer

Groups of service users and peer supporters shared views about benefits and challenges of peer support.

Benefits include: shared identity; development and sharing of skills; increased confidence; improved mental health and wellbeing; and the potential for challenging stigma and discrimination.

Challenges were often associated with employing service users as peer support workers, including role conflict, setting boundaries and ensuring adequate training and support. These challenges with 'professionalising' peer support may influence the growth and sustainability of services.