The benefits of the Peer Mentor programme
Ellie from Great Places gives insight into the life of a Peer Mentor.
Peer mentor volunteers are crucial to the success of the GM Homes Partnership Social Impact Bond. Across all three of our delivery partners – Great Places, The Brick and Shelter – peer mentors are recruited to work with our participants and support them with key living skills, as well as helping with their own personal development.
Here, Ellie Parfitt, Peer Coordinator at Great Places, tells us about the peer mentoring programme and the benefits to those in the programme, and for our participants.
“Peer mentors can help with things that might be quite difficult for anyone who has been homeless for any length of time to do by themselves.” says Ellie.
“But the process also helps the peer mentors as they can reconnect with hobbies and spend time doing things that are beneficial to their own recovery process.
“It’s different to what has been offered by well-being officers in the past. Its quite person centred and very holistic – it’s more about hobbies, getting people to reconnect with the things they enjoy rather than focusing on the nitty gritty. It’s about additional extra support. We hope that the peer mentors will benefit because they will be in their own recovery sometimes, their own journey from homelessness.”
And people looking to get involved in the programme have given the new peer mentor project the thumbs up.
Ellie added: “A lot of participants who have experienced homelessness I’ve spoken to have said they are excited to get experience in something new; maybe something they want to go and do afterwards. It’s also good for the peer mentor’s well-being to give back and help people who have been through a similar situation.
“We hope to provide a lot of 1-1 support.”
Photo credit - Craig Barker