The Peer Education Project is a secondary school-based educational programme that aims to give young people the skills and knowledge they need to safeguard their mental health and that of their peers.
From my own personal experience working in the programme, it has helped me gain an understanding of everyone’s individual viewpoints, and helped me to explore new perspectives and ideas about mental health.
- Peer educator
Following two years of successful implementation in England, the Peer Education Project was rolled out in two schools in Wales in 2017/18.
How does PEP work?
PEP can be delivered in your school in 4 simple steps - we provide all the resources and support you need!
School staff complete a series of online training videos, which cover the key concepts, project structure and materials. By training school staff to deliver the project in their own schools, the project aims to build capacity within schools to run the project year on year.
The trained school staff select and train older pupils, known as Peer Educators, using our detailed training plan. Peer Educators are typically aged 14 and upwards.
Older pupils deliver the five lessons to younger pupils, known as Peer Learners, using our detailed lesson plans. Peer Learners are typically aged 11 & 12.
The lessons cover:
- We all have mental health, like physical health, and move along a spectrum.
- The risk and protective factors to our mental health, including dispelling common myths around mental health.
- The ways to look after our mental health and wellbeing, and where to seek help when needed.
- The ways we can support our peers.
Embedding this crucial mental health knowledge within the curriculum can support a whole-school approach to positive mental health and wellbeing and directly create a learning opportunity for senior pupils. We support and direct schools to additional resources to help build upon the project and develop mentally healthy school culture.
We learned how to discuss mental health concisely yet honestly and bridge the age gap between sixth form and lower school, which has been extremely rewarding.
I think it was easier that they were close to our age – they understood our feelings a bit more.
We all have mental health, like physical health, and move along a spectrum.
An external evaluation conducted by the University of Bristol and Lancaster University (2020-2022), funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) School for Public Health Research (project number SPHR PHPES025)
An external evaluation conducted by the Anna Freud Centre for Children and Families (2016-2017)
Online PEP platform
Our online PEP platform is designed to be your one-stop shop for the project – providing all the resources you will need to introduce the project into your school curriculum. Find out more about the project and register your school today!
We are currently working to bring the project to more schools around the UK. Get in touch with us if you'd like to take part, or to find out more about what's involved.