Strengthening participatory practice with children and young people affected by sexual violence

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Peer support website developed by young people in the UK

Posted: Mon Jan, 2016

Author: Kirsche & CJ

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Young People's Work

The peer support website ‘A guide for young people supporting each other’ behealthy-peersupport.org.uk has recently been launched in the UK to provide advice and support to young people who are trying to provide support to friends who may be going through difficult situations such as anxiety, self-harm, sexual abuse and violence.

The website shares tips for young people who want to ask for help from their friends, and tips for friends trying to help.

The resource was researched, developed and written by CJ Hamilton and Kirsche Walker who first trained as Health Advocates on the AYPH - Be Healthy Project and who are now working together to promote young people’s voices in child sexual exploitation services and beyond.
Kirsche and CJ share why they developed this new resource for young people.

The resource that we have created has a few main aims; these include:

  • Developing a resource to support young people based on our experiences
  • Having a resource that is easily accessible at any hour of the day or night
  • Creating a space where young people can access advice if they’re trying to help a friend
  • Helping young people feel safe

These aims and ideas are what started our journey to create the resource.

To develop the resource we held a number of participation evenings around the UK where we spoke to different groups of young people. We also created an online survey for young people to fill in to share their views and ideas. Based on this research, we decided to develop a website that could be accessed by phone, tablet, PC or laptop and could be used at any time. 
With the support from Lindsay at AYPH, and with her funding and web developer contacts, we managed to secure funding and create something very important to us.
We felt it was really important to:

  • Let young people know that there's ALWAYS help and advice available and;
  • ###li/li###

Please feel free to use the resource and pass it on to as many young people and professionals as possible. We hope you find it useful!
Kirsche & CJ