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Peer Group Chat Service

We offer facilitated peer support for adults with a visible difference and parents of children with visible differences. They are held securely by video call (Zoom) or in our chatroom.

Peer Group Chat is our online support group for adults (18 years or over) in the UK who are affected by a visible difference or disfigurement. We also offer a peer group chat for parents of children (17 or under) with a visible difference.

It is a private and confidential space for people to share their experiences and support each other with their appearance-related concerns.

Group sessions take place over eight weeks (six weeks for parents) and are facilitated by Changing Faces staff, either on Zoom or in our secure chatroom.

Keep reading for more information about the service. If you are ready to join Peer Group Chat, please call us on 0300 012 0275 10am-4pm Monday to Friday or use the link below to fill in our form.

REQUEST TO JOIN PEER GROUP CHAT

About Peer Group Chat

We offer our peer support groups in one of two ways:

  • Live webchat (no video) in our secure chatroom.
  • Video conferencing via our secure Zoom account.

The groups are limited to seven to 10 other people and are facilitated by Changing Faces staff or volunteers. Their role is to encourage the conversations and keep the group safe and comfortable for everyone.

Each session lasts for around an hour and 15 minutes and you can join using a computer, tablet or smartphone.

For adults with visible differences

Through eight weekly sessions, you share experiences and support each other with the challenges of living with a visible difference.

It’s unusual to be in a group where everyone understands your fears and insecurities. So for me this was useful as I felt valued and listened to.

Peer Group Chat user

Each session has a theme for discussion, with time at the end to talk about whatever is on your mind with people who understand what you’re going through. Themes include:

  • Confidence and self-esteem.
  • Managing negative thoughts.
  • Dealing with anxiety.
  • Coping with negative reactions from others.
  • Social communication, life and relationships.

For parents/carers

Through six fortnightly sessions, you and up to nine others will share and support each other with the experiences and challenges of having a child who is living with a visible difference. The sessions will also help you to gain the skills to cope with your child’s appearance-related concerns.

Each session has a theme for discussion, with time at the end to talk about whatever is on your mind with people who understand what you’re going through. Themes include:

  • School life.
  • Coping with negative reactions from others.
  • Dealing with anxiety.

Sue’s story: “Peer Group Chat helped me confront my fears”

“Weekly sessions with around eight other people who have a variety of visible differences has helped me realise I’m not alone. It’s helped me work hard to turn that light back on and find me again. I know I’m in there somewhere – and I’m going to be a survivor, not a victim!”

Read Sue's story

How could peer support help me?

Our Peer Group Chat sessions:

  • Give you the opportunity to connect online with others who have similar appearance-related concerns.
  • Enable you to learn from the experiences of others as well as share your own experiences.
  • Help you to gain the skills and ways to cope with the challenges of living with a visible difference or disfigurement.

Upcoming sessions

The next three blocks for adults begin on:

  • Tuesday 6 September
  • Tuesday 8 November
  • Tuesday 17 January (2023)

Our service for parents is new and we are currently finalising dates for the first blocks. Please check back here soon for more information. You can sign up for our Peer Group Chat for parents using the form below and be in touch to let you know when spaces become available.

How to join

Our peer support groups run regularly. Register your interest and we will contact you with the next available dates. Please let us know:

  • Whether you are interested in the peer support group for adults or parents/carers.
  • If you have a preference for any of the upcoming blocks (for Peer Group Chat for adults only).
  • If you are interested in a webchat or Zoom video group.

To register your interest:

  • Call us on 0300 012 0275 10am-4pm Monday to Friday.
    Calls to our 0300 number cost the same as a call to any landline.
  • Email us by filling out the contact form.
    Click the link below and fill in the secure webform on our Support and Information Line page.

REQUEST TO JOIN PEER GROUP CHAT

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Support & Information Line

To take part in the Peer Group Chat, contact us via our online form on our Support and Information Line page, or by calling our team. Learn more here.

Join our Online Community

Find out about our chat forum, where you can view and ask questions of others living with a visible difference and share your own experiences.