Peer Support

Peer Support Workers have lived experience with mental health and recovery, and are trained to provide support to other young adults experiencing mental health challenges.

What is Peer Support?

Having “been there” themselves, a Peer Support Worker can listen and respond from a place of true understanding. Being in a different place in their recovery process, they can communicate hope and optimism. The values of respect, choice and mutual sharing form the basis of the relationship.

At Stella’s Place, young adult Peer Support Workers facilitate programs, groups and activities, and support folks one-on-one. Peer Support Workers can help participants navigate the mental health system to get their needs met. 

Check Out Our Peer Support Programs Link to page

Our Peer Support Initiatives

Community Healing Project

A trauma-informed approach to community violence to help equip young adults with mental health skills. The Community Healing Project engages young people who live in or are connected with one of the communities that the project is working with.

Learn About the Community Healing Project Link to page

Pathway to Peers at Mount Sinai Hospital

This partnership places a Peer Support Worker trained by Stella’s Place into the emergency department at Sinai. The Peer Support Workers are able to help from a place of understanding for young people coming into emergency in distress.

Learn About the Pathway to Peers Program Link to page

UofT Mississauga Peer Support Program

We are working with the the Student Union from University of Toronto Mississauga to develop a Peer Support Program Plan. This involves facilitating a training program for the volunteers who will provide services on campus.

Learn About the UTM Peer Support Training Program Link to page

Strides, Toronto Gender-Based Violence Program

At Stella’s Place, we have adapted our Peer Support Training Program to support folks with experience of Human Trafficking and Gender Based Violence to encourage trauma recovery, build hope, confidence, and resilience.

Learn About the Gender-Based Violence Peer Support Program at Strides Link to page

Peer & Clinical Integration
at Stella’s Place

At Stella’s Place, our Peer Support Workers are trained members of the staff. They draw from their personal experiences of mental health or substance use challenges to support others who are struggling.

Our Peer Support Workers work independently in some programs (such as our One-on-One Peer Support Program, BeanBagChat, Fitness and Yoga).

In others they also work alongside clinical staff members (such as our Dialectical Therapy Program).

Having Peer Support in a variety of forms allows folks to receive support in the way that works best for them.

A photo of Victoria sitting down, laughing and looking to the right. Victoria has their hand up tucking hair behind their ear and is sitting in front of a wood table. In the background is a white wall with a drawing of a tree hung up on the wall.

Meeting someone who has been there, who listens to you, who shows  that they ‘get it’— it makes you feel a little less lonely, and a little bit more like, “OK, if someone else can manage this, then maybe there is some hope: like this life can be do-able.

 

Victoria, Young Adult Council Member

“You have to know your community—respect them and want to help them, but understand their needs. Working with people is more about listening to them, being present and not about jumping to solutions or problem solving too soon. I’m able to combine my training with my own experiences and reach others in a really personal way.”

 

Abdul, Peer Mentor & Youth Worker

A portrait of Abdul standing outside of the Stella's Place building, smiling, with hands inside their blue jacket. They are wearing a blue baseball cap and a blue hoodie underneath the coat.