Support Groups in the Village

Support Groups in the Village

What is a support group and how might one help me? Great questions! Groups are a safe place to explore the challenges and changes that accompany care giving for a loved one, dealing with one’s own diagnosis of a serious illness or maintaining a commitment to a drug-free life. Members offer each other support as well as practical information. While some may be uncomfortable talking about their feelings in a group, others find it easier to do this with those who share a similar experience rather than with family or friends.

Support groups provide a safe place for members to express difficult feelings and frustrations. However, our groups are not therapy sessions and members say only what they are comfortable sharing. Groups are led by volunteer facilitators with backgrounds in counseling, psychology or social work. The facilitators help participants focus on their goals, keep the conversation on track and offer insights and strategies for coping. Group members agree to respect the privacy of information shared so participants can openly express their feelings, fears and frustrations. These groups talk about common experiences and normal reactions to difficult situations; they are not therapy or counseling sessions.

Fearrington Cares offers ongoing support groups for both caregivers and those who are dealing with a certain illness or medical condition. Please call the office and speak with Karen about any of these groups or to suggest a new group that might meet the needs of residents in Fearrington.

The Cancer Support Group meets weekly to offer emotional support and care for those who are newly diagnosed, in the midst of treatment or celebrating recovery from any form of cancer. This group welcomes both cancer survivors and those who care for them or care about them. Co-facilitators Peter Thomas and Fred Shectman help participants understand the emotional and physical impact of cancer. Local resources and other information are shared as members help each other on this journey.

The Brain Injury Support Group (Brainiacs) meets weekly and is open to anyone who has had a traumatic brain injury, stroke or similar condition.

The Dementia Caregivers Group addresses the challenges of coping with care of a loved one who has significant dementia, Alzheimer’s or other form of memory impairment. Co-facilitated by Karen and Fred Shectman, this group meets twice a month to share information and help manage those ‘36 hour’ days that occur in caring for a loved one with dementia.

Our Parkinson’s Support Group serves both care givers and care receivers, those who have Parkinson’s and those whose loved ones struggle with this condition. This group has been meeting for several years under the capable leadership of Vivian Crouse to offer support, education and resources for participants at all stages of this challenging condition. In April, Karen Metzguer, our nurse, will begin meeting with the caregivers on the first Wednesday of the month. New members are welcome to join at any time; contact Vivian (919-533-6097) or the office (919-542-6877) for more information.

Fearrington Cares offers a weekly meeting of Alcoholics Anonymous for those interested in this classic approach to helping individuals struggling with alcohol addiction. The group meets weekly and new members may come anytime.