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Peer Support Principles

Six Principles for Good Type 1 Diabetes Peer Support

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Diabetes UK, JDRF UK and NHS England, together with people with lived experience, have worked to produce The Six Principles of Good Peer Support for People Living with Type 1 Diabetes. These principles are intended to demonstrate to both clinicians and potential group members what they should expect from a peer support group and their benefits and give confidence to referring clinicians.  

With co-production at its heart, this document provides a helpful framework for group leaders, members and clinicians and can be used to embed consistent and clear values in Peer Support Groups.

Partha Kar, National Specialty Advisor for Diabetes at NHS England said

“This piece of work, led by six amazing individuals living with type 1 diabetes is a welcome step forward and hopefully sets the template for peer support being as much a fundamental part of type 1 diabetes care as education and technology."   

Dan Farrow, Head of Community Engagement at JDRF UK who helped create these principles said 

“JDRF is delighted to be collaborating with Diabetes UK and NHS England on highlighting the importance of peer support in type 1 diabetes. Peer support, or people drawing on shared experiences to help each other with knowledge, information and support, is a simple but powerful approach to health and wellbeing. The set of principles shared here, importantly co-produced with people living with type 1 diabetes, really demonstrate what people affected by type 1 diabetes can expect and gain from peer support. I am excited to see how this journey continues.”

Andy Broomhead, Head of Engaging Communities and Volunteering at Diabetes UK who was also part of the group that helped create these principles said  

"Being able to work on these principles with NHS England, JDRF UK and a group of people living with type 1 diabetes has been hugely rewarding.  Peer support, in all its forms, is incredibly important and gives people confidence to manage their diabetes well.  These principles highlight what people with diabetes value the most from peer support and we’re proud that so much of the support that our volunteers offer is already founded in these ideas."

You can also read a blog by Partha Kar about the importance of peer support and how these principles were created.   

At Diabetes UK we know how important peer support is for people living with type 1 and type 2 diabetes. Being able share their experiences, ask questions in a safe space, feel supported and know they are not on their own is vital to living well with diabetes. 

To find support in your area, including Diabetes UK groups for adults and families, and other peer support options, use our postcode finder

Add your Peer Support Group on Diabetes UK’s postcode finder

We know how important peer support is for people living with, and affected by diabetes, and we want to offer members of the public as much information as possible about their local services. Through our Assemble platform, we can raise awareness of NHS and independent peer support groups alongside our Diabetes UK volunteer led services, to give people the most choice when looking for support.

If you would like to add your independent peer support group to our Diabetes UK Assemble website, please complete this initial enquiry form with your name and contact email. Groups supporting people living with, and affected by type 1, type 2, gestational and other types of diabetes can register your interest to be added.  

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