Find out what happens at our Support Groups Our support groups run across England, Wales and Northern Ireland. If you're over 18, you can just turn up! Our Support Groups are free to attend and are open to anyone affected by bipolar, including family, friends and carers. Find out more about what happens at a Support Group. We are sorry to announce that due to the Coronavirus situation and government advice, the decision has been made to put our face-to-face support groups on hold. We are sorry for any disappointment this causes, and want to assure you that we did not take this decision lightly. We will update the group pages as soon as we are able to resume face-to-face meetings. In the meantime, some locations are engaging in online zoom meetings. If you would like to know more or join a local or national meeting please email here. You should be comfortable with zoom as a platform and happy with their privacy and security notice before agreement to join a Bipolar UK zoom session. Details can be found here here. zoom recommends upgrading to v5 to incorporate the latest security updates. If you have any questions regarding the online/remote groups, please view the zoom FAQs. For more information on Bipolar UK zoom support groups click here. Bipolar UK is here to support you during this time and therefore we encourage everyone to use our other services – eCommunity and Peer Support Line. Please also explore our website for resources and our Chatbot which has answers to a range of questions by clicking the orange button on the right hand side Here are the answers to a few of the frequently asked questions about our Support Groups: Q: How can I find my nearest Support Group? A: Visit our online map to search by postcode or town for a Support Group near you. Q: Who runs the group? A: Each group is run by Bipolar UK and our Volunteer Co-facilitators (who are affected by bipolar themselves) lead the meetings. Q: Do I have to say something at the group? A: No, you don't have to speak if you don’t wish to, but everyone will have the opportunity to do so. Q: Will I be expected to come to all the meetings? A: No, there is no commitment. You can attend as many or as few meetings as you want. Q: Does the group campaign for better mental health services? A: No, the group is there is to provide peer support. However all groups receive information from Bipolar UK about local and national mental health campaigns. Q: Do I have to stay for the whole meeting? A: No, you're free to leave whenever you want Q: When can I join? A: You can join the group at any time. You don't need a referral or to let us know you're coming, just turn up! Q: Can people under 18 attend a group? A: Our Support Groups are intended for people aged 18 and above. If you're aged between 16 and 18 you can attend a Support Group if you're accompanied by a parent or guardian. Q: Can I bring to the meeting my carer/ someone to support me? A: Yes, you are welcome to bring someone with you to the group to provide you with support. If the carer is acting within a professional capacity, we only ask that they attend within this role rather than as an active participant of the group. Q: Can I attend the group for academic or professional reasons? A: No, as these groups are for individuals affected by bipolar to receive support we do not allow people to attend for any academic or professional reasons. Q: Can I speak to someone about a group or to check any details? A: You can contact our support groups team by email on [email protected] Q: What happens if I cannot find a group to attend? A: Bipolar UK have a range of peer support options across different platforms, including an online eCommunity https://www.bipolaruk.org/ecommunity and a telephone call back and email service, https://www.bipolaruk.org/support-line so please do access these if you are unable to find a local support group.