What is Peer Support?
Peer support is a chance to connect with another young person who’s had their own experiences navigating mental health or substance use challenges. Peer support workers are there to listen to you about any struggle or challenge you may be experiencing. They’re not doctors or counsellors, their expertise comes from life experience, which can help if you’re feeling nervous or unsure about getting in touch with a service provider.
Peer support workers can’t diagnose or treat mental health challenges, and shouldn’t be used as a replacement for health professionals (such as doctors, counsellors, psychologists or social workers). They can offer non-judgemental support, understanding, and help with navigating the system and finding services and resources.
Find Peer Support
Some middle schools, secondary schools, universities and colleges have peer support workers and groups who are there to help you with any problem or challenge you might be having. You may want to ask a teacher, school counsellor, professor or someone else at your school about what’s available.
Check out your local Foundry Centre to see if they offer peer support.
BC Children’s Kelty Mental Health Resource Centre – Youth & Young Adult Peer Support
If you can’t find peer support in your community, you can connect with a Youth Peer Support worker at the Kelty Mental Health Resource Centre who provide support to young people and families across BC.
Body Image and Disordered Eating Peer Support
The Looking Glass Foundation offers free, regularly scheduled, real time Online Peer Support to people of all ages across Canada who are experiencing disordered eating, weight or body image image issues.
Overseen by a trained Looking Glass Moderator, each free chat session offers a safe, virtual, and confidential space for people to talk about what is going on for them, to share experiences, and to benefit from the empathy and understanding of others who get what it can be like to struggle with this challenge.
Trans Care BC Peer Support
Trans Care BC provides support to peer-led initiatives, such as trans support groups and groups for parents/caregivers of gender diverse children and youth, through funding opportunities, networking opportunities, and peer project support and mentorship. Find out about peer supports in your area in our service directory.
"It was so good to speak with you [Youth Peer Support Worker]. I felt you really cared and understood my struggle. I cannot thank you enough. I will look into the resources you recommended. I really appreciate your time and empathetic ear."
“I feel so much better after talking to you [Youth Peer Support Worker]! What you said was really helpful.”