Peer Support Groups MY TIME MATTERS
Peer Support Groups for children,
tweens and teenagers

We run peer support groups for children and young people between the ages of 5yrs and 18yrs in a range of community-based settings. These groups allow young people to talk about their experiences of parental imprisonment in a safe and non-judgemental environment. Children and young people share coping strategies and gain support from peers and professionals. Most gain much comfort from meeting others who are in a similar position to themselves.

Having fun is a key aspect of our groups

We get creative with art and craft, play games and we often enjoy community outings to places like the theatre, trampoline parks, indoor rock-climbing centres and bowling alleys. Some children and young people like to make cards or write letters to the person in prison in our groups; others like to make things for their parent’s ‘missing you’ box. Most groups run for around 2 hours but community outings may last longer. We also provide a range of snacks and refreshments during every session.

My Time Matters

Children and young people are able to meet others who share their experience.

Children and young people realise they are not the ‘only one’ with a parent in prison or a parent who has been to prison.

Children and young people learn coping strategies from professionals and one another.

Children and young people can access community outings free of charge.

Children and young people can hear other children’s stories which reduces their sense of isolation.

Children and young people increase their confidence and communication skills by engaging in group interaction.

Children and young people play games with one another and have fun together.

Children and young people can take part in the child’s rights activities including conferences, informing policy documents and working on campaigns (See ‘Changemakers’). Helping other children in the same position as themselves has a significant impact on the child’s ability to thrive despite adversities.

My Time Matters
Links to wider groups and opportunities

We work hard to consider each child’s individual interests and where possible try to incorporate these when planning our sessions.

Also, using our wider connections across the community sector, we do our best to provide children with opportunities to learn new skills and get involved in projects or organisations that might add value to their lives. For example, some of the young people who have joined our project have become part of national and international forums such as Child Rights Connect, ACT2gether, and the European Children’s Rights Unit.
This is great for building confidence, developing new perspectives, and building positive connections with young people from other communities and even other countries.


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