Relatives & Friends Programme

We are now offering the programme in a virtual group setting, using Zoom. So you can take part from the comfort of your own home.

What is Virtual Relatives & Friends?

The Relatives & Friends Programme is a psychoeducational programme designed specifically for those supporting a loved one experiencing depression or bipolar disorder. The aim is to focus on the self-care of the supporter, while also equipping the supporter with the tools to understand and support a loved one experiencing depression or bipolar disorder.

The programme is delivered in 90 minute sessions across four weeks and is available to anyone aged 18 years and over.

Register for Virtual Relatives & Friends

If you do not have a zoom account, you will need to create an account and download the desktop app.

Create a Zoom account >>

Download desktop client >>

Aware is unable to offer technical support. Please contact Zoom for additional information and support.

Zoom Technical Support >>

You will receive Zoom details in advance. If you do not receive any communications from Aware after registering, please check your spam/junk folder. If it is not to be found, please contact to let us know.

Zoom is compatible with smartphones and tablets, but we strongly recommend using a laptop or PC.

Essential Considerations:
  • Reliable Wi-Fi and a quiet space where you will not be interrupted
  • Arrange to print 5 worksheets that will be emailed to you prior to the start date
  • An area to complete exercises / worksheets easily during each session
  • Ideally be in a position to attend all four consecutive weeks of the programme
  • There is a refundable booking fee of €30 for this programme (or €10 if you are a student, unemployed, over 65 or hold a medical card). You can request a refund by emailing upon completion. Alternatively, if you enjoyed the course and are in a position to support Aware, you can leave your booking fee as a donation.

    The next Relatives & Friends Programme will start week beginning 13 September 2021.
    Registration will open on 23 August 2021.

    Would you like a reminder via email when registration is next available?
    Express Interest

    What to expect

    The Relatives & Friends Programme is delivered in workshop style to offer a participative learning environment. Each session is 90 minutes long and facilitated by a mental health professional. The workshops provide an opportunity for discussion, but at no stage is anyone asked to share information if they do not wish to.

    Each group will contain a maximum of 15 people.

    The content of the programme addresses the signs and symptoms of depression and bipolar disorder, offers practical advice on self-care, teaches coping tools, communication skills and addresses the issues that arise for people who are supporting a loved one. At the end of the programme, you will take away your own personal action plan.

    We are confident that this programme will help to:
  • Increase your knowledge
  • Teach you skills to cope more effectively
  • Improve communication with your loved one
  • Offer practical tips on self-care
  • Lessen the impact of the experience of depression or bipolar disorder on your relationship
  • Assist you in supporting your loved one
  • Feedback from past participants:

    • “I thought the programme was very well organised helpful and delivery excellent. I have endured a long bumpy journey and felt isolated lonely confused and didn’t know where to turn!! I have benefited from the new knowledge delivered and to realise there is support!”
    • “I thought it was great to be in a room with others in the same boat – very comforting. Sharing experiences and hearing that the way I’m reacting is normal and giving me information how to help.”
    • “It is stuff I had in my head already, how important self care is etc. but the class really brought it home to me. It gave me strength to follow things through. It didn’t pretend to offer solutions to the problems but rather tools to help which I thought was very good as usually there is no magic solution.”
    • “It just made me feel better every week. To be with people that go through similar situations, have similar situations, have similar issues with loved ones too, sometimes have a little laugh about well known situations.”

    Other programmes available:


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