peer counselling

Topics: High school, Secondary education, Peer group Pages: 5 (1383 words) Published: March 1, 2014
PEER COUNSELING
Peer counselling is the process by which a trained person provides counselling, support and information to one of their peers (in this case adolescent). Peer counselling can also be said to be a process of sharing, that enables two people, the counsellor and the counselee to enter into a relationship that makes possible the clarification of a problem, an issue or a situation at hand through good listening. IMPORTANCE OF PEER COUNSELING

The aim of the peer counselling project in the school is to assist students with necessary and right information on health topics including HIV/AIDS ,drugs and alcohol etc , so that they are able to make the right choices. These information are normally transmitted through talks, posters, slogans, newsletters, or exhibition. The peer educators also assist their peers when they have personal problems of which they prefer to confide on students of their age . In fact peer counselling is based on the fact that young people often seek out other young people’s help and advice when they are face with personal problems, especially in the area of sexuality and family life. Therefore, through peer counseling, peer pressure can provide a positive influence for behaviour change.Longer-term aims are to improve peer relationships generally and to reduce rates of unresolved conflicts and bullying among pupils in the school; and to have positive effects on school climate or ethos (Cowie, 1999). Peer counselling in schools provides significant opportunities for young people to become actively involved in decision-making on matters which directly affect them (Parsons & Blake, 2004). Peer counseling has significant influence on identifying the needs of secondary school students. Students are likely to respond positively to messages from their peers, approach them often, and influence them more. Kamanja(2008) has done studies on this area and states that peer education aims at reducing irresponsible behavior, sexual responsibilities, unwanted pregnancies, sexually transmitted infections, including HIV/AIDS and drug abuse. The large number of students, limited number of teacher counselors, heavy workloads, and social economic and technological changes all put pressure on the teacher, students, parents and society.Peer counseling is based on the fact that students are more likely to accept and feel at home with counseling information validated and disciplined to them by their peers than they would receive the same from trained professionals whom they often consider as out of tune with needs of younger generation (Mugo, 2005). QUALITIES OF PEER COUNSELLOR IN SCHOOLS

Reliability
Confidentiality
Role models
Desire to learn
Sensitivity
Genuine interest in others
Capacity to care
Non-judgmental
Values diversity
Responsibility
Acceptance of others

DEVELOPING PEER COUNSELLING IN SCHOOLS
Refresher courses should be given to the peer counselors. The school administration should ensure the appointed guidance and counseling teachers are friendly and interact well with the other students. Guidance and counseling teacher should appoint peer counselors who are academically above average and students who are respected by the other students. The best in character are to be appointed as peer counselors. Peer counselors are supposed to be given basic counseling skills and life skills. They are also supposed to be shown their responsibilities, students also need to be sensitized on the role and responsibilities of peer counselors. Proper recording system should be developed so that work done by peer counselors can be recorded. In addition the process should take the form of social club in the school. ACTIVITIES OF PEER COUNSELORS

Listening and communication skills make up the major part of good peer counselling. The following are the main activities which a peer counsellor may engage in during counselling session. 1.Peer mentoring

Peer mentoring takes place in learning environments such...
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