Could your experience of mental health help others?
Tuesday 01 March 2022
Gateshead’s NHS is offering an exciting new opportunity for people with experience of mental health services.
We know that people who have experienced mental health issues often have a valuable insight into how services work. That’s why we’re looking to recruit mental health peer support workers.
As a peer support worker, you would help people on their journey to recovery, building on their strengths and helping them get the support they need. You would also help to give local communities a voice in mental health services, helping to shape services or creating new activities to improve people’s wellbeing.
You’d offer practical support right through the journey from the mental health needs assessment onwards, involving people and helping them increase their resilience.
This would include helping people to identify and take part in activities, promoting good mental health and healthier lifestyles.
You would also help people to navigate health services to ensure they access the right service for their needs, as well as reaching out to people who need more intense support and linking them with support services as needed.
It’s a challenging job, but we’ll help you with a training programme and support package, and you would be part of a team making a real difference in people’s lives.
The team will be employed by South Tyneside and Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust (who provide a range of mental health services locally), with support from NHS Newcastle Gateshead Clinical Commissioning Group.
To find further details and apply, please visit www.jobs.nhs.uk and www.stsft.nhs.uk. You could also find out more by visiting our stand at the Jobs Fair on Thursday 10 March at Banqueting Hall, Newcastle Civic Centre, 11am – 3pm.
If you would like support in completing your application, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Frequently asked questions
I haven’t worked in mental health before. What kind of training can you offer?
As a peer support worker, you would have access to a Peer Support Worker Training course facilitated via Teesside University and additional ongoing training through ReCoCo (an organisation that has experience of employing and supporting Peer Support Workers).
There will also be in-house training via South Tyneside and Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust, which will include a wide range of training such as risk management, safeguarding, and information governance. You would also receive a four-week induction on commencing the post.
Would there be more experienced people working with me?
Within the team will be Mental Health Community Development Workers who will have good experience in working in mental health and will support the Peer Support Workers as part of their role. There will also be a Clinical Team Manager who will provide management supervision and be accessible to offer support. You will also be allocated a Clinical Supervisor who will support your skill development and review the cases you have worked with. External mentoring will also be available.
What kind of support will there be? What if my health deteriorates?
You will receive regular management and clinical supervision with an experienced practitioner, and wellbeing will be a standard agenda item at these meetings. You will receive a work, stress risk assessment on joining the service which will be regularly reviewed.
If your mental health deteriorates you will have access to an Occupational Health Assessment and access to mental health support within the organisation. A wellbeing support plan can be developed and reasonable adjustments to your workload would be considered.
How long will the recruitment process take and what will it involve?
You will be required to complete an application form which will be accessible on the www.jobs.nhs.uk website. You can access support in completing this form as described above. If shortlisted, you would be required to attend an interview in Gateshead which should last no more than one hour. You will have the opportunity to talk to someone in advance of the interview should you be shortlisted.
If I’m not successful, will I be offered the chance to be given feedback?
Yes. We will be happy to provide feedback on either your application form if you are not successful in being shortlisted, or on your interview if you are not successful in gaining one of the posts. We would help you utilise this feedback to apply for any further posts which go out to advert.
What is the pay grade?
A Band 4 Peer Support Worker post will match a salary of £22,548 – £24,881.
A Band 3 Peer Support Worker post will match a salary of £20,329 – £21,776.
Where will I be based? Will I be in an office, out and about making visits or both?
The Peer Support Worker roles require an agile method of working, which will include working on site in community bases within Gateshead (e.g. Primary Care Centres, Health Centres etc) and some home-based work where appropriate.
Is being able to drive and have a car a bonus for a candidate?
Being able to drive is an advantage as Peer Support Workers may be travelling to more than one venue across Gateshead within their working day, but is not essential to the role.
Can I apply if I don’t live in Gateshead?
You don’t need to live in Gateshead, but knowledge of Gateshead would be an advantage.
Are expenses covered?
Yes. You will receive expenses for travel, whether that be through your own vehicle or via public transport.
What career progression is offered?
The organisation has a model of career progression which could include progressing within the Peer Support Worker roles, or progressing into roles within the organisation’s wider mental health work stream, dependent on experience, skill development, and training.