21 September 2017
New monthly drop-in sessions at a Bristol café aim to strengthen relationships between mentors and clients as part of a programme to help some of the city’s most vulnerable people.
The sessions at the Arc Café in Redcliffe are run by Golden Key’s Peer Mentoring Service and "create a safe, friendly and non-judgemental space for peer mentors to meet clients," said the service manager Alv Hirst. He added that clients can drop in for as long as they want whether it's a few minutes or an hour. Free drinks, cake and fruit are provided too.
Peer mentors are volunteers who have their own experiences of complex needs including homelessness, drug and alcohol dependency and mental health problems. The service has been set up to match mentors with clients from the Golden Key programme to support them to make positive changes in their lives.
Alv also mentions that “the peers have been vital in the co-production of the drop-in. Their understanding of how to create a welcoming atmosphere for clients where peer mentoring relationships can form naturally will be key to its ongoing success.”
The Arc Cafe can be found at The Undercroft, St Mary Redcliffe Church, 12 Colston Parade, Redcliffe, Bristol, BS1 6RA.
Golden Key Peer Mentor weekly drop-in
Golden Key Peer drop-in