Why Volunteer for PeerTalk? Nabihah's story...
PeerTalk facilitator, Bradford group
Why did you choose to volunteer for peer talk?
I started volunteering for PeerTalk in 2017. I chose PeerTalk because of its great reputation in supporting individuals mental health in the community. Whilst working in the mental health field I recognised how valuable it is to have accessible mental health support for individuals and PeerTalk offered this. I was also very excited to join a support group that valued reflection and research opportunities to further develop the support groups.
What do you get out of it?
Peertalk has provided me with great depth of experience in managing various situations. It has helped me build on my listening and empathic skills and allowed me to reflect on how I can be present by being an active listener. PeerTalk has allowed me to understand different cultures and diverse needs.
How are you supported in your role?
The team is extremely supportive in many ways. We have the opportunity for professional development by attending training events. There is a strong sense of communication within the team.
We have a debrief with our co facilitators when finishing a meeting and there are regular meetings with your group where any concerns can be raised. We, as a group, are all connected via email and WhatsApp, where we can speak with each other when and as required. Currently, through lockdown, we are all connected through WhatsApp where we have had weekly chats during the pandemic. This has supported my emotional wellbeing and helped me stay connected with the team.
Has anything particularly struck you whilst volunteering with PeerTalk?
I have been particularly struck by the strength and support individuals offer to each other during the meetings. The energy the group members give to each other and the Peertalk values they uphold of being non judgemental and respectful throughout the meetings makes me feel so proud to be a group facilitator at PeerTalk.
What would you say to someone thinking about volunteering for PeerTalk?
PeerTalk is extremely rewarding and a great way to give back to the community. It is a wonderful support group where you feel connected with not only the facilitators but the group members. It allows you to have space for reflection and gives you the ability to not only use your skills but to strengthen and expand on these transferable skills.