What is Peer Support?

Peer Support is built on shared personal experience and empathy, focusing on your strengths not weaknesses with the goal of achieving wellbeing and recovery.

It may be social, emotional or practical support but, importantly, Peer Support is mutually offered and reciprocal, allowing you to benefit from the support whether you are giving or receiving it.

Download our Peer Support information leaflet Download File - 321.15Kb

We offer a range of peer support including:

Peer Support Drop-in Groups

Groups in the community are the foundation of our work. Our first self-help group started in the Zion Centre in 1995 and is still operating today! We now have 9 drop-in groups running across Greater Manchester alongside various workshops and courses which are tailored to a variety of mental health needs and aspirations.

Drop-in groups provide people who are experiencing challenges around common mental health conditions with the opportunity to meet and talk in a mutually supportive and safe space. Each group offers peer support, information and a welcoming environment where you can share your experiences, coping strategies and support each other to find solutions to your challenges.

Find a drop-in group near you


Peer Connect

Peer Connect is designed for people who are new to Self Help and who are making initial enquiries into our services on the phone. Peer to Peer supporters can arrange to visit an individual at home, or at a nearby community location to discuss what services we have to help them and what other support is available in the local community.

We can help individuals where appropriate to complete referral forms and accompany people to first appointments or engagements with drop-in groups and other services.


Peer Mentors

Regular sessions with our Peer Mentors, experts by experience in wellbeing and recovery, are available for individuals experiencing a range of mental health and wellbeing challenges. Emotional and practical support based on real first-hand experience of what has worked in the lives of fellow recovering peers.

This service lasts for up to four months. It involves one to one meetings and/or phone support from our Peer Mentors and is designed to provide a real bridge to healthy interdependent wellbeing.

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Recovery Workshops

In this workshop, our Peer Support team provide an overview of the steps for a successful recovery from mental health problems. Taking a radical break from the clinical focus of traditional services and placing greater emphasis on shared learning and healthy community, these workshops help you make the successful journey from stuck, to recovering, to thriving!


Peer Development

We provide training, development and ongoing support to help peers make the successful transition from supported to supporter. This involves helping an individual to self assess their readiness to become a peer supporter and to successfully manage the ups and downs of supporting others. For people who are ready to undertake this journey we can offer a range of volunteering and paid opportunities.

“Having peer support is invaluable. You are talking to people who have had like for like or similar journeys to you so they have real empathy with you.”


Peer Support is available throughout Manchester. To access support or find out more please contact peertopeer@selfhelpservices.org.uk or call 0161 226 3871.

Find Peer Support near you

Take a look at the other services we offer

Struggling to cope?

Don’t struggle alone overnight. If you’re experiencing anxiety, panic attacks, depression, suicidal thoughts or are in crisis, call us from 8pm - 6am.

If you are in crisis overnight from 8pm - 6am, call us on: 0300 003 7029