Journal of Health Education Research & Development

ISSN: 2380-5439

Open Access

The Wellness Workshop - A Peer-Led Intervention within Mental Health Services - An Experience Report


Terry Bowyer, Nick Plumbridge, Neal Beamish, Caroline Wawman and Ryan Williams

The ‘Wellness Workshop’ is a peer-led intervention within mental health services. It was designed and implemented by two Peer Specialists (people with their own lived experience of mental illness and recovery), with support from two Occupational Therapists, and is aimed at helping people experiencing mental health distress in order to explore, demonstrate and promote the principles of Personal Recovery discussed by Slade (2009). The workshop is a learning model with an emphasis on instructing attendees how to maintain good mental health using a strength-based approach to attaining wellness. The central component and guiding principle is the ‘lived experience’ of the facilitators who can act as role-models offering their vital experiential knowledge, hope and understanding to the participants. The style of the workshop is conversational and interactive, lasting for approximately one hour. It has received very positive feedback from the participants, who often state that they can better relate to the information and advice delivered by Peer Specialists rather than traditional mental health service staff. The workshop has primarily been delivered at the local NHS Crisis Team Day Hospital, but its popularity with people who access mental health services and traditional nursing staff has resulted in the workshops being delivered at other sites in the county.


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