Aware Support Groups offer a unique opportunity to talk openly about depression or bipolar disorder and its impact. We guarantee confidentiality within normal limits.
View our six minute introductory video about Aware Support Groups to find out more.
Ongoing attendance at the groups will give you a better understanding of your depression (and elation) and its impact on your relationships and your work or social life. The caring and supportive nature of the groups allows attendees to develop the confidence to identify mood changes at an earlier stage, and so minimise the disruption on daily life.
How long is the Support Group meeting?
The group usually lasts for an hour to an hour and a half and is then followed by tea and coffee.
Is there an age restriction?
Yes, Aware Support Groups are for people aged 18 and above.
Do I need to register for a Support Group?
No, you do not have to register in advance or make an appointment to attend a support group. Just check our support group locations list, note the time and day that the group meets and turn up on the night. You will be most welcome.
How many people will be there?
On average there will usually be between five and ten people at each group, with a mixture of men and women.
Do I have to say anything when I get there?
Usually people are asked to introduce themselves to the group on a first name basis. After that, you don’t have to speak if you don‘t want to, you can sit back and listen. However, you may be invited to share if you wish.
Can someone come with me for support?
It can be helpful when a family member or friend brings you to your local support group, if attending for the first time. However they are required to leave once the group begins.The group facilitators will be able to advise you as to what time the group finishes so that your friend or family member can return to meet you. Support meetings are usually 90 minutes long.
What if I don’t want to attend a Support Group just yet or I cannot get to a Support Group?
Aware is offering an online programme called Life Skills Online. This online programme, based on principles of cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), is supported by trained Aware volunteers. As well as this programme we offer support for depression via our Support Mail service.