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National Alliance of Peer Leads

Join our National Alliance of Peer Leads to bring peer support development and professionalisation under peer leadership.

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What is the National Alliance of Peer Leads (NAPL)?

NAPL is a new project that will bring together experienced peer supporters, peer supporters employed in leadership roles, community organisers and grassroots groups to lead and take ownership of the professionalisation of peer support in England. 

In short, a National Alliance of Peer Leads is needed because so far peer support has been developed as a job or profession without us, resulting in much of our expertise not being reflected in national guidance, training or standards (where they exist). In the absence of a national voice and leadership that has experience and expertise in peer support, what works well or doesn't work well in peer support and in leading/organising peer support has not been captured. There is still a lot of confusion about what peer support is, what peer workers do and how to recruit, train and support peer supporters in the workplace - in the NHS and in the VCSE. Peer Hub CIC believes peer support workforces and professionalisation processes need to be led by experienced and knowledgeable peer supporters if they are going to be good. We need to do this together as a community if the values and principles that underpin peer support are to be the foundations of our professional practice and workforce.

Why is the National Alliance of Peer Leads needed?

Through a series of working groups, the NAPL will establish professional standards and recommendations/guidance for key areas of peer support. The types of things we are expecting to work on include peer support practice standards, core content and standards for training of peer support workers, accountability to grassroots values and communities, supervision standards, job profiles, peer leadership competencies and guidance for organisations. We anticipate discussions about governance, decision making and collective representation, including Unionising. Members who join at this stage in our development will be expected to contribute to the building and shaping of the Alliance, and prioritising key areas to work on.

What will the Alliance do?

Membership will be available to individuals (not organisations just yet). As we are setting up the Alliance, we are inviting experienced peer supporters and peer leaders that have knowledge or experience of peer support work, community organising, grassroots groups and leading peer workforces/programmes/community projects to join the Alliance. We need to start with a group of people who are experienced and knowledgeable in using, developing and contributing to peer expertise, from grassroots peer support to workforce development. This will enable us to respond promptly to key issues such as professional competencies and training, which are otherwise being developed without us. The work of the early membership will include establishing democratic governance and a longer term membership development plan, including addressing issues of affordability, accessibility and intersectionality.

Who can join the Alliance?

Yes, members will be required to pay a monthly membership fee. There are three different memberships available, starting at £3.50 per month to £29.99 per month. Each membership is the same other than in cost, and we are asking members who can afford more to pay more on a Pay What You Can basis. Using a pay for membership structure, like a trade union, will give us more freedom over how we use the resources and ensure the ownership of the Alliance remains within the peer support community. Once the Alliance is functioning, decisions about membership fees and accessibility will become the responsibility of the Alliance itself. The initial membership fees are just to get us started and help build some financial independence and resilience.

Will there be a membership fee?

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