I first came across the Elefriends community after attending their online peer support training. I was interested in online peer support for adults and wanted to find out more about the impact of providing community members with peer support training. How does this affect their experience? I wrote about this training here.
Online community consultation
I really enjoyed working with both the community and the digital team at Mind so I was really pleased to be asked to do some consultancy work for them. At the time, Elefriends was moving from a Facebook page to a new platform. The team were looking to consult with the community both on and offline. This was to ensure that as many community members as possible got a say in the changes.
I attended the offline consultation days and then based on my discussions with community members I:
– Designed a three day online consultation to gather community members’ views on how the site should be managed
– Used interactive tools to keep the group engaged, and provided support to participants throughout the exercise
Recommendations, moderation guide and evaluation
I summarised the findings, to produce recommendations and draft guide for community managers
I also helped the team design an evaluation survey for their funders, which looked at how community members used the site to better manage their mental health.
At times, the consultation touched on sensitive issues, including the expression of thoughts of self-harm and suicide. Clare’s understanding of mental health, empathy and respectful approach has been a real asset to this project and I look forward to working with her again.
Eve Critchley – Senior Digital Officer at Mind