Support Group Facilitator

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Please give us some idea of the role of your trained SHG facilitator:
  1. Maintain smooth flow, keep the group on track and focused on the task/topic.
  2. Lead the discussion but make sure all group members have a chance to voice their opinions.
  3. The facilitator remains neutral and never takes sides.
  4. Group facilitator facilitates and does not interrupt the group discussion.
  5. Facilitator remains focused on the process and not on the final outcome of any discussion.
  6. Make sure all group members understand language/s used for discussion.
  7. It is important to acknowledge other person's feelings, especially on those few occasions when controversial issues would have come up.
  8. Non-judgmental attitude in a support group is a must. Thus the facilitator never comments on how and what members have said.
  9. Ensure interaction is amongst members and not with the facilitator.
  10. Refrain from imposing personal opinions on other members.
  11. Ensure members feel free to interact with others.
  12. Nurture a positive outlook in the group.
  13. Develop ways to promote fellowship within the group.
  14. Allow time for some one-to-one interaction before or after the group meeting for sharing such matters beyond the scope of formal discussions.
  15. Occasionally invite professionals to hold discussions on medication and other major issues.
  16. Keep finding new ways to make members feel time and money spent for meetings are worthwhile indeed. So beware of onset of boredom.
  17. Remember it requires time and sincere effort to build trust and earn loyalty of the group members.
  18. Neither hesitate to talk about nor hanker after donations. Let them be voluntary.
  19. Voluntary work has its own share of thankless moments! So, remember inner satisfaction of serving a good cause itself is the best reward.

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Are the group facilitators health-care professionals?

No, they are not. All group facilitators are volunteers who may themselves have experienced some emotional problem. But they would have had practised the self-help Recovery method and also read Recovery books.

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In what ways are facilitators of Recovery support groups qualified or trained for that job?

The best way is to contact any mental health professional known to you or in your town as he is mostly aware of such support group activity there. Alternatively, you could check with a known support group of neighbouring city who may be networking with a support group of your town.

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