Peer Support Nova Scotia is a program conducted by Mental Health Innovations (Nova Scotia) on behalf of the Nova Scotia Health Authority.
A Commitment Made
The 2012 Mental Health and Addictions Strategy: Together We Can, reinforced the powerful impact peer support can have on a person’s recovery. The Nova Scotia Health Authority, and the IWK have moved forward with the expansion of mental health peer support at inpatient sites across the province.
A Peer Supporter is someone who uses their lived experience with mental health (either personally, or through supporting a loved one) to inspire hope and empower others in similar situations by providing social and emotional support.
Peer Support is connecting with another person who has lived experience of their own and can relate to what you are going through—this could be a divorce, a sick child, a difficult call, the list goes on. Social support is the proven foundation for success for people to find their path to health and wellness. However, Peer Support is not a replacement for professional medical or clinical care.
Note: Workplace programs differ from community or healthcare-based programs. They are commonly established and maintained within the organization. This helps with relate-ability and creation of understanding and trust.
Delivering peer support in Nova Scotia is based on a transition-focused model which is supported by evidence-based research, and validated in other Canadian healthcare settings. It draws a straight line from clinical inpatient sites, back into the community through the discharge process. The direct costs for provision of Peer Support can be offset by decreased (re)admission rates, and shortened hospital stays.
Peer Supporter-Peer Support Coordinators (PS-PSC)
Peer Support Nova Scotia employs peer supporters across the province with a dual focus.
- As a Peer Supporter, they directly support peers (clients) receiving NSHA mental healthcare services.
- As a Peer Support Coordinator, they look toward the community for a working relationship with organizations that are partnered to assist peers in transition after discharge.
DOWNLOAD: Peer Supporter One Pager (click here)
For the Community
Critical to the peer support model’s success is the ability to connect clients to peer supporters in the community. Building on the great work of caring organizations, Peer Support Nova Scotia is committed to building peer support capacity within the community through partnership opportunities.
Upcoming Training and Workshop Dates
As part of this commitment, Peer Support training is being conducted for community organizations and individuals.
Community of Practice Webinar – July 17, 2pm to 4pm
Are you a peer supporter? Would you like to connect with other peer supporters to discuss cases, best practices and learn new approaches to supporting peers? If so, please join Peer Support Nova Scotia for our upcoming “Community of Practice” webinar for peer supporters.
Being a peer supporter is rewarding and challenging work, often done in isolation of other peer supporters. Joining a community of practice helps to create a network of colleagues you can learn from and rely on. This webinar is intended for individuals who are working and/or volunteering as peer supporters with a focus on mental health and/or addictions with both youth and adult populations.
The webinar will be an interactive session with the opportunity for small group work as well as large group discussions. To ensure this community of practice session meets the needs of the group, please use the link below to connect to a short survey, which will take approximately 5 minutes to complete, to share with us what you would like to learn and discuss in these sessions. (Click here to complete the survey)
To register or to receive communications regarding upcoming sessions, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Program Manager: Lauren Scott