"While I learnt how to coach others, I was also able to apply certain ideas to myself. Learning was fun and full of activity, engaging and interesting"

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Near Peer Coaching

Near Peer Coaching is a successful well established impactful programme unique to Elevate that helps meet the gap in wellbeing services that are in short supply. Older pupils and younger pupils benefit from our Near Peer approach, older pupils learn valuable life-long skills that make them more attractive to universities and employers, and younger pupils get a well-being near peer supporter that can empathise with them and is trained to help younger peers take responsibility for their wellbeing and learning. The Near Peer Coaching approach is an evidence informed well-being and learning support method that benefits both the older coach and the younger pupil coachee. Research suggests that peer coaching support is influential and effective for student well-being, learning and community. To book a training session for your school click here.

Read the Secondary Near Peer Coaches Report

“We have seen pupils refuse all other interventions, except their Near Peer Coach, this is really having a positive impact on our ability to support the gap in services that currently exist. We want as many Near Peer Coaches as we can” Glantaf School.

Elevate have developed a comprehensive resource pack that accompanies our excellent Association for Coaching Continual Professional Development (CPD) accredited training for school staff to implement the programme in schools. This resource contains permission letters, step-by-step guide, resources and activities for Near Peers to use. It also has evaluation measures, mapping how the Near Peer Coaching approach can meet the Well-being Area of the Welsh Curriculum. We have developed the resource with the support of head teachers. A sample for secondary schools can be found here. (coming soon) Details of the training can be found at the bottom of the page.

"Near Peer Coaching is a one-to-one focused conversation between a coach with a 'lived experience' within the coachee's system of functioning and a less experienced coachee. The coach facilities a positive non-judgemental empathetic listening and questioning space where client-led self-directed learning takes place and the coachee moves towards their preferred future through actionable meaningful goals set as a result of gaining self-insight"
Elevate (2020)

The Near Peer Coaching (NPC) project trains students in core coaching skills and supports the school to set up in-house wellbeing and learning coaches from a pool of older students who have recent ‘lived’ experience of negotiating school successfully. The near peer coaches are able to function in the dual role of role models and coaches to their younger peers.

Schools who have run this project have found that it really helps strengthen their school community and have been delighted with having professionally trained, youth volunteers actively involved in improving the engagement and wellbeing of younger colleagues. These near peers work with students from younger years who are experiencing difficulty or face issues that prevent them engaging in school life. The Near Peer Coaches provide a valuable empathetic ‘early intervention’ service’.

The Near Peer Coaches become a sustainable cost-effective pool of in-school volunteers for staff to call upon to support younger students. The project compliments existing buddy systems by creating informed and skilled coaches. The training provided is recognised by the Association for Coaching, a national and international body that exists to develop coaching excellence in all sectors that coaching is used in.

The Near Peer Coaches can use the training hours and time given in voluntary activity towards a Baccalaureate. Previous Near Peer Coaches have highlighted their skills and experience in applications for employment and university. Additionally they embed the techniques learned, into their own way of being, improving their own grades and studies

The Near Peer Project is exciting, and builds on years of research that suggests peer influences can really transform the student experience. This Elevate project builds sustainable wellbeing and learning support systems in schools. We also offer secondary schools opportunity for their higher ability pupils to be awarded an accredited coaching qualification which allows them access to a one year free membership of the Association for Coaching. Some details of the CPD training are described below the testimonials on this page. For the full accredited Association for Coaching qualification for pupils we recommend you get in touch. Please contact us to set up this unique and impactful project in your school.



"I have thoroughly enjoyed being a near peer coach and mentor this year as it has allowed me the opportunity to help those younger than me who were struggling with school life. Furthermore, becoming a near peer coach and mentor has given me tools I need to improve my communication skills which has taught me just how important listening in a conversation is."

A.O - Year 12

"Being a part of the Near Peer Coach and Mentor scheme has been a very fulfilling experience. It gave me a chance to connect to other pupils younger than me and realise the skills needed to become a good coach/mentor. I’ve learnt so much including things I didn’t realise were important life skills I would use, such as listening, asking open/non-leading questions etc. I had worked with three pupils in this last year and each with their own different need, this showed me how the abilities I’ve gained in being a near peercoach/ mentor can be applied to so many aspects and even conflicts that can occur in work and general life. I’d highly recommend becoming a near peer coach/mentor if not just for the important skills, then for the experience and satisfaction in helping younger pupils."

B.A - Year 12

"Being a near peer coach/mentor has allowed me the opportunity to help someone when they needed it the most. It gave them the chance to have the option to talk to someone. The best feeling about it all is when they actually say that they don’t need to see you anymore because they are no longer struggling. You then begin to understand the impact you have had on this person’s life and actually see how you have helped them make improvements. Being a near peer coach and mentor has really been a great experience."

M.A - Year 12

"Near peer coaching and mentoring was something I had never heard about until the start of year 12. At the end of the initial introduction, I realised how crucial this type of coaching could have been for me or my friends. I know that coaching, mentoring and counselling in general can be beneficial but the age difference between the mentor and mentee can lead to misunderstanding and frustration. Near Peer coaching/mentoring not only provides support for aspects such as school work and stress but being a similar age means that they can talk to someone who has gone through comparable experiences. I think that more people should have a go at near peer coaching and mentoring as it can help you become a better listener and I would highly recommend trying near peer coaching and mentoring – it is a great feeling to know that you have made a positive impact to someone’s life."

M.B - Year 12

Our Near Peer Coach training enables the trained Near Peers to operate flexibly as coaches and/or mentors.
We can train your young people as near peer coaches so your school can set up a sustainable system of support for younger students
Donations and fees are applicable to schools outside of our grant funded area of operation. Income generated supports us fufil our primary charitable aims.


Helps the coachee to identify exactly what they want, where they are now, and how to get there. Put simply, coaching is a non-directive confidential conversation, where the coach listens and asks questions and acts as a guide for individual learning. The coach creates a framework that enables the ‘coachee’ to work out his or her own solutions to a problem. This is an empowering experience for the coachee. In this approach, the coach generally avoids giving content especially suggested solutions without permission. Effectively the coachee or young person engaged is participating in self-directed learning, and is gaining the tools and skills to enable them to find solutions to their situation. The coaching relationship is finite and therefore has an end.


Is an open-ended relationship that provides guidance and advice to the mentee from a “wiser” and “more experienced” mentor, and guides learning and personal development. The mentor advices, intructs, counsels, teaches, encourages, champions and challenges the mentee. It also often involves imparting “specialist” knowledge.

- Young people are faced with numerous choices

- Too much choice may lead to lack of decision making

- Afraid of making the wrong choice

- Peer pressure makes the choices for them

- Creating the ability to dream

- Increases confidence

- Creates informed choice

- Creates a strong sense of personal achievement

- Creates accountability when working through the choices made

- Empowers

- Raises aspirations and self-esteem

- Challenges limiting beliefs and attitudes, and identifies them

- Causes young people to take action and remove barriers to taking action

- Is forward focussed and solutions orientated

- Improves stress management

- Reduces test anxiety

- Improves wellbeing

- Helps with conflict management

- Creates self-awareness and empowers self-regulation

- Allows for self-directed learning

- Enables a growth mindset

- Helps the young person find their values, strengths and skills

- Builds them up through appreciative enquiry

- Increases academic engagement


This is a full one day training session that is interactive, and equips between 12-18 young people with core mentoring and coaching skills. They will learn:

- What near peer coaching & mentoring is

- Roles and responsibilities of the near peer coach/mentor

- Skills and qualities of a near peer coach/mentor

- To self-reflect and create self-reflection

- How people learn

- Five stages of response/listening

- Questioning skills

- Safeguarding

- The Near Peer process

DONATIONS/FEES APPLY FOR SCHOOLS OUTSIDE OUR AREA: £fee/donation plus travel/accommodation

This is an in-depth two day and a half day training programme that is participatory, practice based, and equips between 12- 18 young people with deep coaching skills. They will learn everything that a foundational level professional coach would learn and can follow either a ‘wellbeing coaching’ or ‘coaching for student-learning’ pathway. This program gains a certificate from the Association for Coaching for participants.

- How to use a structured conversation such as GROW/ TGROW and/or ENABLE

- Qualities, responsibilities and the role of a coach

- Coach competencies developmant plan

- Understand how to motivate people

- Identify and clarify exact goals

- The coaching process

- Manage the first session and subsequent sessions

- Facilitating self-directed learning

- Purpose of coaching questions

- Practice buddy-coaching with each other over 4 sessions

- Common issues young people present for coaching

- Observe coaching in action and practice

Parts of this course are modelled on the Level 1 certificate in coaching that has accreditation from the Association for Coaching

DONATIONS/FEES APPLY FOR SCHOOLS OUTSIDE OUR AREA: £fee/donation plus travel/accommodation

These are bite-sized training modules that further equip the Near Peer to support younger people. All the modules are 3 hours long, and have been developed through informed evidence based practice and research.

- Coach using Solutions Focused Coaching

- Cognitive Behaviour Coaching

- Motivational Interviewing and Coaching

- Health & Wellbeing Coaching

- Coaching with DNA-v in Mind. (An ACT approach)


DONATIONS/FEES APPLY FOR SCHOOLS OUTSIDE OUR AREA: £fee/donation plus travel/accommodation