INTENTIONAL PEER SUPPORT
Intentional Peer Support provides a powerful framework for creating relationships where both people learn and grow together. All staff are trained in Intentional Peer Support, which includes regular “co-reflection,” where staff discuss their successes and challenges in creating an atmosphere where members can build relationships that are mutual, explorative, and that build community. In addition, our staff participate in quarterly training with IPS-certified trainers. Staff also run groups with members as a way to learn and practice incorporating Intentional Peer Support into their daily lives.
The emphasis is on learning together, versus helping or receiving help. If we have the courage to move towards self-reflection and self-awareness, relational patterns may be observed and identified. We help one another to see these patterns, and take action in trying new things.
We embrace and value highly our commitment to Intentional Peer Support. We are seeing the changes every week, in ourselves and others. The more risk one takes, the more benefit he or she receives from the experience. It’s both exciting and challenging!
How is IPS different from traditional service relationships?
IPS relationships are viewed as partnerships that invite and inspire both parties to learn and grow, rather than as one person needing to ‘help’ another.
IPS doesn’t start with the assumption of a problem. With IPS, each of us pays attention to how we have learned to make sense of our experiences, then uses the relationship to create new ways of seeing, thinking, and doing.
IPS promotes a trauma-informed way of relating. Instead of asking “What’s wrong?” we learn to ask “What happened?”
IPS examines our lives in the context of mutually accountable relationships and communities — looking beyond the mere notion of individual responsibility for change.