The Peer Partnership is an extension of the successful work achieved by Brigstowe in providing peer support for people newly diagnosed or struggling with HIV. Now in its 7th year, this peer mentoring program has helped not just those people newly diagnosed, but also provides engagement for those who mentor them.
We recognise the huge benefits from the provision of peer mentoring to people living with long-term physical or mental health problems. Our mentees tell us that they are provided with the right information in ways they can understand, feel less lonely and isolated, and feel better able to self-manage during and following their support. Following from our successful HIV peer support project, we partnered with Bristol Community Health and Sirona to see if the same outcomes could be achieved in other health conditions. Following a successful pilot project in type 2 diabetes, Brigstowe has decided it needs to expand its ability to take advantage of new opportunities to spread the benefits of peer support to others who would gain from it, and The Peer Partnership is the result.
The Peer Partnership wants to work with people living with long-term health conditions and organisations to create effective, safe, and user-led peer support services across Bristol and beyond. We want to be able to offer opportunities to share best practice with others designing, managing or implementing peer support, and provide all the necessary resources and skills to build successful projects and advocate the widespread acceptance and use of peer support as a valid and essential tool in supporting the resilience of people living with difficult circumstances.
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