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50 Plus Peer Support Group

We have developed a focused peer support group for self-identifying woman survivors of sexual violence, whether that be recent or historic.

People over 50 have been less likely to access our services. We talked to women of 50 plus and they told us it would be helpful to have a group specifically for over 50s and that they would like to understand more about trauma and how it affects them.

We’ve set up this group to make it easier for self-identifying women survivors of 50 plus to access the support they need. The purpose of the 50 Plus Peer Support Group is for survivors to support each other in gaining more understanding about their reactions to the experience and explore healthy ways of coping.

Understanding responses to fear can help survivors to make sense of experiences and feelings. We aim to offer a welcoming and trauma-sensitive space for this to happen.

Who is the group for?

survivors of sexual violence, abuse or harassment, (recent or historic) who are 50 plus and identify as a woman.

When does the group run?

Fridays 11.00-13.00

What is the process for attending?

Anyone wishing to attend will need to meet with our Welcome Team first. Once you have met with the Welcome Team and expressed an interest in attending the group, you will be sent a weekly email where you can sign up for the group/s you’d like to attend.

How many people will be there?

We have a limit of 10 people that can sign up for each group. There is sometimes less than this. There will also be the facilitator and one of our trained volunteers.

How often can I attend?

You can attend as often as for as long as you wish to. Some people attend just a few times whilst others come every week for many months.

How do I sign up? 

You will have to complete a referral form and speak with a member of our welcome team in order to attend this group. Please fill out here –dpmscloud.com/external/referralformselfsurvivorsnetwork.

Do I need to book?

Yes. You will be sent a link to book a place via Eventbrite once you have met with our Welcome Team. If you can’t use Eventbrite you will be able to text the facilitator to book a place.

What is the structure of the group?

During the first hour, we will share some information about trauma reactions and explore healthy ways of coping. Survivors will be invited to speak about how they are feeling and talk about the impact of their experiences of sexual violence. Group members may offer support to each other and share coping strategies. The facilitator and volunteers help to hold these discussions. The last 45 minutes are less formal and chance to sit and chat and have a coffee together.

Photo of 5 self-identifying women sitting in a supportive circle. The women have different skin colours, body sizes and shapes, and clothes.

Peer Support Group Agreement

1. Confidentiality 

Everything said in group is confidential*. This will only change if the group facilitator or volunteers believes that a participant or someone else is at risk.

2. Discussion  

We ask participants to understand that it is not appropriate to talk about the details of any abuse, but it is fine to discuss the impact the abuse may have had and how they are feeling.

3. I statements  

We encourage the use of ‘I’ rather than ‘You’ when supporting each other.

4. Appropriate behaviour  

We ask for considerate behaviour and compassionate and inclusive language towards all group members.

5. Alcohol and Other Drugs  

If the facilitator believes that a participant is under the influence of alcohol or other drugs, they will be asked politely and discreetly to leave the group.

6. Exclusive relationships

Please be mindful that exclusive relationships between or among group members can make other group members feel left out.

7. Self Care 

Remember to take care of yourself. If you need to, take a break, and ask the facilitator or volunteers for support.

9. Being together safely

We ask all participants agree to abide by social distancing rules and Covid 19 guidelines.