Peer Mentorship Initiative

Our Medway Outreach Peer Mentor Coordinator, Donna Payne, has been looking at ways to engage peer mentors and clients and increase their mental and physical health wellbeing. Below, you can read an update from Donna, of a successful initiative that did just that. Our thanks to Donna for her hard work and dedication.

Since I became the Recovery Peer Mentor Coordinator for Medway, I have been working along with the peer mentors to engage with clients that are struggling with substance misuse.

A large number of clients have claimed that boredom and having no structure to their day is one of the main reasons for their substance misuse. A few have said they take drugs to sleep some of the day away, which is a sad thought, but one that all our peer mentors can relate to.

One of the Peer Mentors Sam and I came up with the idea of arranging badminton with a few of the peer mentor clients. We booked 2 courts at Medway Park, and this proved to be a great success and lots of fun was had by all. It was great to see the motivation and completeness of the clients coming out.

One of these clients who is also one of the ‘intense needs’ clients at Pathways came to me the next day and said he was on such a natural high that when he got home, he decided he didn’t actually need a drink or a ‘pick me up’ and just stayed in the house and watched TV.

Word has got out about our sporting trip and we recently had our second badminton session, and more people came along.  As most of our clients are on benefits, they can get a £2.40 pass a year to get access to free or heavily subsidised activities at the leisure centre.  It’s a win win all round, where clients can go to spend their time in a meaningful way, increase their mental and physical health wellbeing and is a great way for the peer mentors to engage with their clients.