Experts by experience supper Bristol : Using life experiences to drive change
Have you had a life experience that was really challenging and are now trying to use that experience to create change? If so, we want to hear from you.
We are recruiting a group of inspiring individuals who are in the early stages of using their life experiences to drive change. You might not consider yourself a ‘leader’ yet, but you do possess the qualities of one: passion, drive, resilience and empathy – all life skills that money can’t buy.
We are looking for 15 people based in Bristol who identify as an Expert by Experience. To join the project, you must:
- Have direct experience of social injustice*
- Be in the early stages of using these life experiences to drive positive change by setting up their own initiative, working within an organisation or by campaigning and/or advocacy work
- Have a proven commitment, passion and drive to challenge the systems that promote social inequality
- Be available to engage in the project over the next 4-6 months
- Be aged 18 or over
- Live in the Bristol region
In return for taking part in the project, you will receive:
- A payment of £500 to participate
- Space and time identify and challenge the systems that promote social inequality
- Training to carry out interviews with your peers and analyse the findings
- Support to design and lead a workshop that highlights the barriers identified by the group
- Tailored practical support to apply for funding
- The opportunity to connect and collaborate with a peer group of experts by their own experiences
*any of the following but not limited to: racial, disability or gender inequality, homelessness, multiple complex needs, violence and abuse, experience of social care, immigration/ migrants exclusion, prison / criminal justice, addiction (of any kind), gang affiliation and multiple and complex needs.
If you are an expert by experience and would like to join the project, you will need to be available between Thurs 11 April and Thurs 12 July to attend six daytime workshops. In return for your time, you will receive researcher training and a payment of £500.
Come along to our Experts by Experience support on Thursday 22 March to hear more about the project and connect with like-minded leaders using their lived experiences to create change.
Why we want to hear from you
Too often we are encouraged to hide the negative experiences, but what if we used them as assets? What if more people who had been in prison were involved in designing and running rehabilitation services? Or if more people who had experienced addiction were leading recovery solutions?
We believe that direct first-hand experience of social issues, like addiction and homelessness, gives a legitimate understanding of the challenges that people in similar circumstances are facing, and an authentic insight to the potential solutions needed.
What we want to do
Our mission is to understand and break down the barriers that are preventing people from using their life experiences to drive change, so that a range of people can create solutions together – especially the people who have lived through them.
How we will go about it
We will work alongside a group of experts by experience to understand the barriers and opportunities they have faced trying to create change in Bristol. Alongside this we will identify the organisations that are already championing people with lived experience, and those that need a bit more encouragement. Together, we will design solutions to address the key barriers preventing people from using their life experiences to lead change.