Peer Support Service (East Sussex Community Network)

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The Peer Support Service is provided by Peer Specialists, people with lived experience of mental health challenges, who can support you to take control of your mental health and stay well.

The service is part of a network of mental health recovery support, called the East Sussex Community Network (for more information download the leaflet below - translated versions are also available on our website here).

Coronavirus Statement (5th November 2020)

To best protect our clients, visitors and staff, in March, we changed the way support was provided by the service so we could adhere to the Government’s advice on social distancing and infection control.

In place of building-based/community and face-to-face support, over the past few months, the Peer Service has been supporting clients over the phone and through online means.

Alongside our commissioner, we have been planning how we can resume some level of face-to-face support for our clients whilst balancing the needs, safety and wellbeing of our clients and teams. Following Covid-safety guidance, we are in the process of risk-assessing our seven Wellbeing Centres to ensure they can initially be used by staff in a socially-distanced safe way. We are pleased to be able to say that, having put in place strict measures to minimise risk, some of the Peer Specialists are now able to work from certain Centres again.

As and when there are any changes to the support we provide, we will update this page.

In the meantime, if you have any urgent questions about your support, or have a new enquiry about our service, please contact us by phone or email using the contact details at the bottom of this page.

What support is available?

One to one support

Drawing on personal experiences of mental health challenges our Peer Support Specialists will work with you to support recovery and prevent crisis, enabling you to identify and maintain positive coping strategies and self-management tools.

Our trainer Peer Specialists will work with you for up to 6-8 sessions enabling you to identify goals and overcome challenges that will help you move forward in your recovery and maintain positive health and well-being. This includes managing your mental health, identifying your strengths and interests, connecting with the local community and exploring options such as volunteering, returning to work or other beneficial activities.

Drop in sessions (currently paused due to Coronavirus - see statement above)

We also offer weekly recovery focussed drop in sessions at our East Sussex Community Network Well-being centres where you can talk with other people facing mental health challenges in a friendly, safe and informal environment. The drop-ins are led by our Peer Specialists and a Peer volunteer, however, you will have the opportunity to share and listen to stories of recovery and hope, enabling and empowering one another to move forward and identify management techniques and pathways for recovery. If you are interested in volunteering your time to co-facilitate our weekly drop-in sessions, please get in touch.

Where can I access support?

The Peer Support Service is provided at the East Sussex Community Network’s seven Wellbeing Centres in Hastings/ St Leonard’s, Bexhill, Lewes, Eastbourne, Hailsham, Uckfield and Newhaven. You can also request to meet a Peer Support Specialist in your local community.

Am I eligible and how do I apply?

The service is available for people aged 16+ living in East Sussex with mental health support needs. To apply, contact us on the details below. We accept self-referrals and referrals from organisations and providers on behalf of individuals.

Accredited Peer Mentoring Training

Do you have lived experience of mental health challenges?

If you are interested in Peer support/mentoring, we provide a NCFE Level 2 Award in Mentoring. This qualification provides a deeper understanding of the role of a mentor and will provide you with the skills, knowledge, competency and confidence to mentor others using a recovery focussed/peer support approach.


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Contact Details

Peer Support Service Team
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General Enquiries
01323 405 334 / 07772 613945