What to expect at a Peer Support Meeting
The meeting starts at 7:00 pm, but some arrive a bit early to socialize, which can be difficult on Zoom.
The host then
- Asks the people there for the first time to identify themselves, followed by others who want to give an update or ask questions of the group. (In person, this is done by show of hands.)
- A short presentation is shown outlining the ground rules for the meeting. (In person, the rules are read by the facilitator.)
- A few polls are conducted so that everyone can see who is at this particular meeting, in terms of length of prostate cancer journey, treatment received, … (In person, this is done by show of hands.)
- A joke or 2 may be told to ‘lighten the mood’.
- The facilitator is introduced.
The facilitator then
- Gives a quick introduction, perhaps specifying time limits for each speaker.
- Calls on the new comers in turn to tell their story, which may include age, date of diagnosis, PSA and Gleason score, with whom they’ve consulted, … whatever they feel comfortable sharing, and any questions they have for the group.
- Gives the ‘floor’ to other members of the group in turn to provide support and answers (to non-medical questions!). The order is governed by the chat function in Zoom or raised hands in person.
- He then moves on to those with updates or questions.
(At an in-person meeting, there will be short break at about 8:00 for coffee, cookies, and conversation.) At ~9:00, hopefully after everyone who wants has had their questions and concerns dealt with, the meeting concludes. Anyone who wants can stay an additional 15 minutes or so to exchange information or chat.