Building Blocks to Peer Success
A toolkit for training HIV-positive peers to engage PLWHA in care
Purpose of this toolkit: to support the training of HIV-positive peers who work to engage and retain people living with HIV in health care.
Primary audiences: experienced trainers and training organizations who can use this toolkit to design, enhance or refine their own training of peers.
Additional uses: Peer supervisors or program directors can use this toolkit to plan a peer training program for newly hired peers or provide continuing education for existing peers.
Español: Componentes Esenciales para la Capacitación y Éxito de los Trabajadores Pares (Peers)
View the HRSA-sponsored Webcast: Training Peers to Support Clients in HIV Care and Treatment
The Training Toolkit Guide is offered as a comprehensive introduction to the training curriculum and offers structure on how to approach the training curriculum. This guide also includes a brief overview of each section of the toolkit and provides the necessary tools to effectively use the curriculum. Below is an outline of the different sections of the guide.
Download the Toolkit Guide (PDF)
- The introduction outlines the purpose of the toolkit, how it should be used, the principles it is based on, and things to keep in mind as you prepare to train your peers.
Using the toolkit to design a training:
- This section focuses on things to consider as you design a training, including peer expectations, the role the peers will play within the organization, characteristics of the client population peers will serve, time available to conduct the training, and experience and skill set of the trainers.
- This section is intended for new trainers or trainers with little experience. It provides training tips, ideas, and principles along with specific facilitation skills that will make the job of the facilitator easier.
- The training modules are drawn from four peer training programs that have successfully implemented trainings in the field over the course of two to six years. The modules are grouped into major topics which include core competencies, continuing education, activities, case studies and scenarios and comprehensive training curriculum. This section provides a brief overview of each of these sections.
- This section demonstrates how to incorporate evaluation planning into the overall planning of a training curriculum and how to involve stakeholders early on in the process. This can help you meet everyone’s expectations and provides some ideas to keep in mind as you prepare your curriculum.
- This section provides resources and examples for designing, facilitating and evaluating a training as well as additional sources to better inform the peer training process.
Core competencies for peer training:
- HIV/AIDS: HIV life cycle, medications and resistance, risk and harm reduction, and treatment adherence
- Communication Skills: stages of change, listening skills, open-ended questions, cultural awareness and non-judgmental behaviors
- Peer Role: workplace expectations, boundaries, confidentiality, counseling, navigating the health care system, working as part of a clinical team, communicating with providers, readiness to be a peer, and self-care
- Putting It All Together: Jeopardy: a comprehensive, interactive Jeopardy game using PowerPoint that covers skills from all three core competencies. Jeopardy PowerPoint
- Activities--this section includes introductions, energizers and closures that help facilitate group interaction and learning, break up the day, and bring closure to the training.
- Continuing Education--includes additional training materials to reinforce or supplement the core competencies
- Case Studies and Scenarios-- includes case studies, scenarios, and role plays separated from the training modules so that trainers may mix and match them based on the needs of the peers.
This section includes the training curricula of each of the four training programs from which the above modules have been adapted, providing four examples of how these modules were used in actual training programs.
- Lotus Training Curricula
Although the PEER Center project has ended, CDs are still available. You may request a copy of the Building Blocks to Peer Success toolkit on CD to be mailed to you by filling out the peer training toolkit request form.
The PEER Center and national Peer Education and Training Sites held the first of a several workshops for training of trainers in May 2009. Below are two articles describing peer training-or-trainer workshops.
- The Snowball Effect: Training the people who serve peers who serve clients
- May 2009 Training of Trainers Workshop: Teams from 8 organizations train 81 peers
Suggested citation: Health & Disability Working Group, Boston University School of Public Health. (2009). Building Blocks to Peer Success: a toolkit for training HIV-positive peers. Retrieved from http://peer.hdwg.org/training_toolkit
Funding for this toolkit is through the Health Resources and Services Administration's HIV/AIDS Bureau, which is a program within the federal U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Funding is through the Minority AIDS Initiative.