Peer Support – Online and in the ‘Real’ World

Peer support is a core element of the work we do at Southampton Centre for Independent Living. Indeed the organisation was set up in 1984 with the main aim of Disabled People supporting fellow Disabled People. That is why we believe that Direct Payments Support Workers must be Disabled People and preferably Direct Payments users themselves.  

Over the years we have set up a number of peer support groups with varying degrees of success. Barriers such as lack of accessible venues, scarcity of accessible public transport and difficulty securing PA support to attend the meeting have hampered our efforts however we are pleased to report that we now have popular peer support groups running in Eastleigh and the New Forest. Both groups are always eager for new members so why not come along? Venues and dates are shown below and we hope groups in Fareham and Petersfield will start very soon.

Peer support groups are a great way to meet other Disabled People to discuss any issues to do with Independent Living. You don’t necessarily have to be on Direct Payments to participate.

Another exciting move is that SCIL have opened an online chat room where we plan to hold regular peer support group meetings for people who have access to the Internet. One advantage of this is that people don’t need to worry about access, transport or PA support, they just need to turn their computer on. If you want to try out the SCIL chat room, then just click here 

We hope that these developments both in the ‘real’ and the ‘cyber’ world will benefit Disabled People across Hampshire and help strengthen our commitment to peer support.

Future Dates of Peer Support Groups are as follows:

23 August and 21 September at Wells Place in Eastleigh 2.30pm – 4pm Contact Maureen on 023 80202641 or email Maureen@southamptoncil.co.uk 

20 September in New Milton contact Berni on 023 80202630 or email Berni@southamptoncil.co.uk to confirm time and venue 

4 September Online Peer Support Group in SCIL Chat Room 2.30pm – 4pm Contact Robert on 023 80202639 or email Robert@southamptoncil.co.uk to receive an invite.   

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