Community of Communities members receive a number of benefits including:

  • the ability to self-review under the Service Standards for Therapeutic Communities
  • an annual peer-review visit (full members only)
  • the opportunity to attend peer-reviews of other therapeutic communities
  • a full annual report on your community’s performance based on the results of self and peer review scores, including action points and areas of achievement
  • a copy of our national report which details the overall network performance each year
  • access to a range of training events and development opportunities
  • access to a number of members tools such as College Accreditation Review System (CARS)
  • access to our email discussion forum
  • discounted rate to the CofC Annual Forum.

Below is some of the feedback we have received from members:

 “I was made aware of the similarities and differences between the two communities and felt inspired. Most importantly I had a sense that we are not alone…’

“Creating relationships and connections with other Therapeutic Communities is very important.”

“The peer-review provided time to work together and to come out of isolation...”

“The visit has benefited us as a whole, it has also given us as a community a good level of understanding in how other communities operate, whether in the prison system or within the community as a whole.

“The review process was a fantastic growth process for all of us and we are certainly proud to be members…Thanks for all your support.”

“Doing a peer-review is a brilliant idea, it opens your mind, it makes you discover new settings and different ways of working.”

“The process provides an opportunity to recognise that difficulties are shared by all therapeutic communities.”

 “We look forward to the continuation and working on the improvements.  It has been invaluable in having outside input…”

“The peer-review provided a chance to reflect in a new way.”

“I…felt able to learn from the fact that questions were asked that we don’t ask ourselves anymore”

“The process has been enlightening and has stimulated some interesting, open and honest discussions between staff/staff, staff/clients and clients/clients.” 

“We enjoyed the openness, and found the process to be useful.”,

“The peer review was a comfortable and productive experience.”

“The visit had an ethos of honesty and openness.”

 “Instead of professionals coming together…there was a real sense of whole communities being involved, with staff, current and ex-community members sharing and discussing their experiences…It felt right, healthy, like a therapeutic community on a very large scale.”

Membership at all levels demonstrates a commitment to a network of quality improvement and provides access to a wider community of support which promotes and encourages shared learning.

  • Associate membership
    Available for international members who are unable to commit to the requirements of full membership. This membership provides an annual self-review of the Core Standards and portfolio evidence.

  • Developmental membership
    Available for one cycle only. This membership provides a self-review of the Core Standards and access to CofC training, workshops and attendance at peer-reviews.

  • Full membership
    Provides a full peer-review against the standards, and full participation in an ongoing process of quality improvement including access to CofC training and workshops.

  • Accreditation membership
    Available to communities after two full membership years and on demonstrating the community fulfils required criteria. Accreditation membership provides an award which demonstrates the community meets critical Therapeutic Community standards.

  • HMP Integrated Audit membership
    Available only to HMP Therapeutic Communities operating as an accredited offending behaviour programme. Membership involves a biennial joint review which provides HMP TCs an option to demonstrate the quality and efficacy of their services as well as identify areas for development. Membership is accredited by the Correctional Services Advice and Accreditation Panel.

For more information on the different types of membership offered by CofC please download the Community of Communities process document.

There is no deadline for joining the Community of Communities (CofC).

We welcome applications at any point in our annual cycle of self-and peer-review. You can apply to join the membership by completing both the Community of Communities Membership Finance Form 2024 - 2025 (which includes the fee calculator) and a Community of Communities Membership Joining Form 2024 - 2025.

If you would like more information, please complete our Enquiry Form.

Who should join?

We offer membership to all Therapeutic Communities or services who are developing a therapeutic culture, who are committed to working with the C of C service standards and who engage with other members in the sharing of ideas, achievements and challenges.

Membership is at the level of the therapeutic community participating in the review cycle rather than at the parent organisation or NHS Trust.

What is expected?

  • provide a link person to liaise with the CofC team
  • involve all community members in the CofC process as far as possible
  • ensure community members are kept up-to-date with the CofC network and encourage involvement e.g. disseminating information from the discussion, publicising reviews and events, etc.
  • provide at least 3 community members including client members, where appropriate, to attend peer-review/accreditation visits and authorise accompanying travel costs (Full and Accreditation members only)
  • provide a senior person for TC specialist (Accreditation members only)
  • take responsibility for inviting key stakeholders from both internal and external agencies (e.g. senior managers, referrers, statutory inspectors etc.) to attend the communities’ peer-review/accreditation visit (if applicable)
  • take responsibility for assisting CofC in disseminating important information to members e.g. tell us about policy changes, relevant articles etc.
  • commit to returning all necessary correspondence to the CofC team in a timely manner.


Annual membership fees are calculated based on the level of membership applied for, the size of your community, and the sector in which you operate. The Membership Finance Form includes a Fee Calculator which may help.

Members of CCQI quality networks in the NHS who have a surplus at the end of the financial year can use this opportunity to extend their membership – either by signing up for additional services or by paying in advance for multiple years of membership.

We invoice members from April of each year.


VAT is charged on membership of the network. However, NHS Trusts are entitled to reclaim the VAT that you pay on your CofC membership fees. Trusts can ‘refund’ the VAT the team has paid to the team. We will be happy to provide VAT receipts for those trying to reclaim VAT from their trust.

The Community of Communities currently comprises 68 members from within the UK and abroad.

If you would like more information regarding this, please contact the C of C team at

College Accreditation and Review System (CARS)

We are launching CARS for the 2022-2023 review cycle. When registered, each service has their own dashboard, enabling them to complete their self-review, upload their evidence, and access their reports in one place. This self-review can then be used to make a report, or for a peer or accreditation review. 

When you become a member you can gain access to our Knowledge Hub, an online group for sharing knowledge and best practice, discussion, blogs, ideas, to keep up with events.

Access the Knowledge Hub

Read more to receive further information regarding a career in psychiatry