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Te Pou is a source of information and resources to help the sector develop and grow the peer workforce in a sustainable and measured way.
The peer workforce (also known as the consumer, peer support and lived experience workforce) includes all roles that require personal lived experience of mental health and/or addiction problem, for example peer support and consumer advisor roles. Te Pou uses the term ‘peer workforce’ to describe this workforce.
The peer workforce has a vital part to play in effectively supporting service users and whānau.
People who have experienced mental health and addiction challenges and gained wellbeing develop many skills, knowledge, talents and attributes through those experiences. He Ara Oranga: Report of the Government Inquiry into Mental Health and Addiction heard substantial evidence that people and whānau want and need their voices to be heard and to be in service design and delivery. The Inquiry recommends the Ministry of Health and District Health Boards strengthen people’s voices and experience in services and be accountable for delivering on this goal. The consumer, peer support and lived experience workforce shares this view and enlarges on it. We want a future where wellbeing is realisable for all people and where lived experience voices, skills and leadership are at the heart of service and systems design and service delivery. Developing the consumer, peer support and lived experience workforce has been shown to benefit everyone in services – not just the people who access these.
Download a copy of the strategy here.