Listening Ear seen the need to help support ordinary people to make vital interventions in peoples lives, especially when it came to poor states of mind and or mental health problems. A need for Peer lead support was and still is needed in society. In the past it was cups of tea with a neighbour or calling in with a Grandparent; but society has lost this valuable resource of people listening to each other.
Due to the continued professionalization of the psychology world, ordinary people were left behind and felt that they were either inadequate or felt nervous about supporting others when it came to issues of the mind. For those who wanted to help, they needed to ensure that they were doing it right!
This vision of empowering and supporting 'everyday people' and young folk was shared by Brian and Karen Kerr, who wanted to train people within their local community through their LEGASI programme. They were the first people in Northern Ireland to be trained as Listening Ear trainers and were able to successfully set up the first support hub within their local community.
Today, Listening Ear has trained and support over 100 local people who are there to listen in their community, schools and workplaces. Listening Ear is also supporting people with debt, benefits and employability, as well as providing a valuable social network day and daily, just to get people talking and sharing. Their valuable work as Listening Ear volunteers is to help alongside mental health professionals by providing that 'Ear' when people just need to talk.
#youmatter to us
Our Listening Ears: Making an Impact