Based on the principles of peer support and ownership, the aim of the Beyond Prison programme is to encourage people to take responsibility for their own mental health – and to support others to do the same.
Beyond Prison worked in partnership with Practice Plus Group to develop an eight-module programme covering the following topics:
- Mental health & wellbeing awareness
- Behavioural changes
- Goal setting
- Active listening
- Confidentiality & boundaries
On successful completion of all modules, students provide a short presentation of their learning before graduating at a formal ceremony.
Inmates at HMP Brixton have already taken the training and the programme continues to expand. The course is offered by the prison as a first step into education and some people go on to use their newly acquired skills to volunteer as Peer Mentors, providing support to their fellow inmates.
As a result of this training, people are better equipped to manage their own mental health. In addition, many have become Listeners, Carers, Health Care Reps, Violence Reduction Reps, and/ or become voluntary Peer Supporters, providing support to other inmates on their wings.
The course has impressed prison healthcare services and has recently become mandatory for any inmates who work as healthcare representatives to ensure they are empathetic, compassionate and professional when carrying out their duties.
Solidarity in a Crisis (SiaC)
Solidarity in a Crisis (SiaC) offers peer-led support for people experiencing a mental health crisis in Lambeth, Lewisham and Southwark.