Two patients offering each other peer support

Apr 13, 2022 / General News

Getting Better Together: Scottish Rite for Children's Peer Support Program

Scottish Rite for Children's Peer Support Program connects families with other Scottish Rite for Children families who share common experiences or face similar challenges. Many families find understanding and support through talking with another family who has had a similar experience. Learn more about our Peer Support Program below. 

What is the Peer Support program?
A process through which people who share common experiences or face similar challenges come together as equals to give and receive support and knowledge. We o­ffer family-to-family support between families whose children:
  • have the same diagnosis
  • are undergoing a surgical procedure
  • are following the same treatment

"I am very happy that Michael will be part of this program. I know he was born to share his experience and make a dierence in other kids' lives. Meeting other kids with similar challenges and talking with their parents gave us strength, hope and faith."

– Patient parent, Bernice 

Examples of peer support participants:
  • A family whose child has a rare diagnosis and has had challenges, but now has some wisdom gained from those struggles to share with a family whose child is younger or newly diagnosed with the same rare condition.
  • A preteen girl and her family have been told that a spinal fusion operation is necessary to treat an increasing scoliosis curve and she wants to talk with another patient who has had this procedure for a firsthand account of what it is like.
  • An athletic elementary age boy has been diagnosed with a juvenile form of arthritis, and he must now drastically reduce how much he practices his sport, stay out of the sun, change his diet and take medicine that has side effects.
How are families connected?
Families may be identified by clinic staff­ as a good candidate for receiving support from another family, based on their situation.
Families can self-refer to receive (mentee) or give (mentor) peer support.
  • A family may ask for support, and there may not be a specific support group that meets the need.
  • A family may have had a great experience or good outcome and wishes to support other families.
In both of these situations, peer support may be a good option.
How can you be involved?
If a family would like to be supported, they can let their clinic staff­ know and the Family Resource Center (FRC) Coordinator will contact the family.
If a family would like to provide support, or be a peer mentor family, they can let their clinic sta­ know or reach out to the FRC Coordinator for more information.
Both families will then complete and sign an authorization form to move forward.
Learn more about our Family Resource Center. 

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