An expert by experience is a person who has experienced mental and/or substance abuse or other kind of crisis in life. It can also be a person with challenging life experience, such as long-term illness or disability or living close to people with challenges.
Experts by experience are trained
To become a certified expert by experience one needs both theoretical education and training accordingly. This education is held through different associations and organizations depending on the main experience one has experienced or is experiencing. An expert by experience always has training and support from their background organization.
Experts by experience are a significant resource
Experience-based knowledge is needed for developing services, for changing attitudes and for creating an understanding of challenges people meet during their lifespan. Experts by experience work mainly in relation to people who do not have similar personal experience. Experts by experience may have various tasks e.g. they
- participate in health and social services as experts of recovery
- work as experience lecturers in different educational institutions
- work as representatives of service users in development workgroups