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peer Support Groups 


If you or someone a partner or a family member has Aspergers, is autistic, or has another similar neurodivergent profile, you may be interested in joining one of our Peer Support Groups.

AV's peer support groups are a great place to meet others who share your experience of Aspergers or autism, to exchange advice, or to just escape from the outside world into a space where you know that the others in the group understand what you're going through. Peer support groups are often the first option we suggest to people contacting AV for the first time, as this often helps the person to find a few contacts and to experience that feeling of realising that you have a community of support available.


Who runs AV Peer Support Groups?

All of our peer support groups are run by volunteers who are peers of their group - they share their group attendees' perspective and experience of Aspergers or autism. Group leaders and attendees may also have experience of another peer support group, for example having Aspergers or being autistic, as well as being a parent of a neurodivergent young person. All AV volunteers hold valid Working With Children Checks.


Who can attend?

AV peer support groups are open to AV members as well as non-members. New attendees are always welcome at all of our peer support group meetings, and we invite all first-time attendees to register for free! If you would like to try out an AV Peer Support Group, please contact our AV Admin Team - let us know which group you would like to try out and we will send you the code to register for free! AV peer support groups are open to peers at all stages of the diagnosis journey, including self-identified.


Please note that our peer support groups are for peers only and attendees to need to be able to attend independently. We invite partners, parents and carers to attend their own peer support groups. For our Teens Group, as the attendees are under 18 years, a parent or carer must attend each event with their teen. Please visit the Teens Group page for more information.


How can I register?

When you have found a peer group meeting in the calendar below which suits your needs, just click on the "Register" link on the left! This will take you through the registration process.

If you have any questions about this process or need more information, please contact our AV Admin Team.



    Meeting schedule

    Updated: January 2022

    We understand that many within our community are keen to return to in-person gatherings as soon as possible. The health and safety of our team and of our community is our priority, and we are closely monitoring the COVID-19 situation in Melbourne and continuing to communicate with our Group Leaders and venues as we work towards regularly returning to in-person peer group meetings.


    Please check the peer group meeting calendar below to find out if our next meeting is online via Zoom or in person.



    Aspergers Victoria Group Values and Approach:

    • A Positive Strengths Mindset: We see possibilities, strengths and talents, not problems or deficits
    • A Growth Mindset: We pursue goals through continual learning from each other equally and share that knowledge; we don’t judge ourselves or others
    • Empowerment: We listen, support and encourage others to grow
    • Empathy: We try to understand another’s situation and help, if asked
    • Trust: We value the privacy and confidentiality of others in and outside of the group
    • Respect: We acknowledge the wishes and rights of others and believe we are responsible for our own behaviour

    We call this the AV Groups Way. We expect attendees to abide by this in our events, activities and meetings. Our Peer Volunteers are NOT counsellors or therapists and cannot provide support for mental health issues.  


    OUR PEER MEETINGS AIM TO EMPOWER ATTENDEES THROUGH DISCOVERING:

    COMMUNITY Our groups create a sense of belonging to a community with like-minded, supportive peers with lived experience

    RESILIENCE through ‘Growth Mindset’ and ‘Self-Regulation’ learning

    CONFIDENCE through a focus on appreciation of strengths, special interests and abilities

    SELF-DETERMINATION and independence through mentoring and learning

    FRIENDSHIP and social experience through regular peer gatherings. Reduce isolation, perceived stigma plus builds friendship and trust through regular contact with the group

    KNOWLEDGE shared in the group about how to extend or enjoy strengths, and ways to manage challenges 

    Ultimately our gatherings aim to support self-esteem and, confidence and self-empowerment, to determine your own life independently, including areas of physical and mental health, relationships, employment, finance, housing, special interests and self-reliance. It could be regarded as a social networking program for Aspergers - without therapy.



    AV Peer support groups

    Upcoming Peer Group Meetings

      • 3 Feb 2022
      • 7:30 PM - 9:30 PM
      • Online via Zoom
      Register

      Partners Group: Online Meeting
      Topic: Self Care


      About our Partners Group

      Join our Partners Peer Support Group to meet other adults who are or who have been in a relationship with someone who has Aspergers, is autistic, or has a similar neurodivergent profile. Sharing experiences within the safe environment of our peer support meetings can be a lifeline, and sharing with people who have similar lived experience is validating and often educational. Your partner may be self-diagnosed or have a formal diagnosis, and you may share a household or live separately. We are an inclusive group and welcome partners of all genders and relationship types.


      This month, we will be talking about self care. Everyone can benefit from self care: what is self care for me?


      This session is facilitated by our Partners Group Leaders. All AV volunteer group leaders share the lived experience of their group participants and welcome new attendees.


      Cost: $5 for members, $10 for non-members. FREE for holders of a +Groups Membership.

      Become an AV member today to access discounted tickets for groups and events, members-only programs and interest groups, and to support all the wonderful work our volunteers and staff team do for our community.

      If you are attending an AV group for the first time, you are welcome to register for free using our first-time attendee ticket. Please email our AV admin team to access this.

      If cost is a barrier, please email our AV admin team.


      Do I need to register?

      All attendees to AV's online and in-person groups and events must register before attending. For Zoom meetings, you need to register to access the Zoom details. For in-person meetings, all attendees need to register before attending due to DHHS COVID contact tracing requirements and venue requirements. Please register if you would like to attend to ensure you don't miss out.


      What is Zoom and how do I access the Zoom meeting?

      Zoom is a free web-based video conferencing program. You can download it for free onto your computer or phone/tablet, or you can dial in and participate via your landline or smartphone. When your registration is complete, you will receive a registration confirmation email which includes the Zoom meeting details. We have included more information below about Zoom and how to access the Zoom session.

      You are welcome to have your camera on or off as you prefer. You can also join in the discussion via the chat function via text-based chat function within Zoom. Download the AV Zoom Guide (pdf)


      If you have questions about the event, about AV, or need assistance with registering, please contact our AV admin team: call 0480 385 710 or email our AV admin team.


      AV Privacy Policy

      AV Event Terms & Conditions

      • 4 Feb 2022
      • 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM
      • Online via Discord only
      Register


      Teens Hub: Online Peer Meeting

      Teens on Discord


      About our Group

      Our Teens group is for Aspergers, autistic and other similar neurodivergent teens to meet and hang out to play games or chat. At our online meetings, the Teens meet via Discord, and each Teen must be supervised by a parent or carer when accessing the Discord server.


      The Teens Team:


      Cost: $5 for members, $10 for non-members. FREE for holders of a +Groups Membership

      Become an AV member today to access discounted tickets for groups and events, members-only programs and interest groups, and to support all the wonderful work our volunteers and staff team do for our community.

      If you are attending an AV group for the first time, you are welcome to register for free using our first-time attendee ticket. Please email our AV Admin team to access this.

      If cost is a barrier, please contact our AV Admin team.


      Do I need to register?

      All attendees to AV's online and in-person groups and events must register before attending. For Zoom meetings, you need to register to access the Zoom details. For in-person meetings, registration is required due to DHHS COVID contact tracing and venue capacity limits.


      When you register, please register using the name of the parent or carer, and please add the name of your teen as part of the registration questions. You will also be asked to confirm that you and your Teen both agree to the Teens Discord Code of Conduct in order to register for the meeting. 



        What is Discord?

        Discord is a free voice, video and text chat app for teens and adults aged 13 and over. Teens can access Discord via their computer or smart phone. Using Discord, they can join servers they have been invited to, create private servers with their friends, or message each other individually or in group chats. We suggest reading the Parents' Guide to Discord Blog before joining for the first time.


        Is it safe for our teens to use?

        Yes. Aspergers Victoria have created a dedicated, secure server for our Teens group. Only registered participants can access the AV Teens Discord server, and the link changes monthly for security. Our moderators have the list of registered teens and will only allow them to be online during the meeting. 


        If you have questions about the event, about AV, or if you need assistance with registration, please contact us: call 0480 385 710 or email our AV admin team.


        AV Privacy Policy

        AV Event Terms & Conditions

        • 5 Feb 2022
        • 2:00 PM - 4:00 PM
        • Online via Zoom
        Register



        Women & NB Folk - Online Meeting


        About our Group

        Our Inclusive Women's & NB Group is a great place to connect with other Aspergers/autistic women and NB folk to chat about your experiences, share ideas, exchange advice, and support each other. You are also welcome to attend our Adults Group or our Young Adults Group, or all three! 

                                                                       

        This session is facilitated by our Women's & NB Group Leader.

        All AV volunteer group leaders share the lived experience of their group participants and welcome new attendees. All AV group leaders have a Working with Children Check.


        Cost

        $5 for members, $10 for non-members. FREE for holders of a +Groups Membership.

        Become an AV member today to access discounted tickets for groups and events, members-only programs and interest groups, and to support all the wonderful work our volunteers and staff team do for our community.

        If you are attending an AV group for the first time, you are welcome to register for free using our first-time attendee ticket. Please email our AV admin team to request this.

        If cost is a barrier, please contact our AV admin team.


        Do I need to register?

        All attendees to AV's online and in-person groups and events must register before attending. For Zoom meetings, you need to register to access the Zoom details. For in-person meetings, all attendees need to register before attending due to DHHS COVID contact tracing requirements and venue requirements. Please register if you would like to attend to ensure you don't miss out.


          What is Zoom and how do I access the Zoom meeting?

          Zoom is a free web-based video conferencing program. You can download it for free onto your computer or phone/tablet, or you can dial in and participate via your landline or smartphone. When your registration is complete, you will receive a registration confirmation email which includes the Zoom meeting details. We have included more information below about Zoom and how to access the Zoom session.


          For most events, we ask participants to keep their microphone muted to minimise background noise, however you are welcome to participate in the discussion via the Zoom text-based chat function. Download the AV Zoom Guide (pdf)


          If you have questions or would like more information, please contact Jenni (AV Admin): please call 0480 385 710 or email our AV admin team.


          AV Privacy Policy

          AV Event Terms & Conditions

          • 10 Feb 2022
          • 7:30 PM - 9:30 PM
          • Online via Zoom
          Register


          Online Parents & Carers Community Connection

          About the Parents & Carers Group

          This is an online peer support meeting open to all parents and carers of Aspergers / autistic children, teens or adults to meet, chat, exchange ideas and find support.


          About our Group Leaders

          Our Online Parents & Carers Group Leaders are Jenny and Natalie.


          All AV volunteer group leaders share the lived experience of their group participants and welcome new attendees. All AV group leaders have a Working with Children Check.


          Cost: $5 for AV members , $10 for non-members. FREE for holders of a +Groups Membership.
          Become an AV member today to access discounted tickets for groups and events, other members-only programs, and to support all the wonderful work our volunteers and staff team do for our community.

          If you are attending an AV group for the first time, you are welcome to register for free using our first-time attendee ticket. Please email our AV admin team to access this.

          If cost is a barrier, please contact Jenni. 


          Do I need to register?

          All attendees to AV's online and in-person groups and events must register before attending. For Zoom meetings, you need to register to access the Zoom details. For in-person meetings, registration is required due to DHHS COVID contact tracing requirements and venue capacity limits.


          What is Zoom and how do I access the Zoom meeting?

          Zoom is a free web-based video conferencing program. You can download it free onto your computer or phone/tablet, or you can dial in and participate via your landline or smartphone. When your registration is complete, you will receive a registration confirmation email which includes the Zoom meeting details. We have included more information below about Zoom and how to access the Zoom session.


          You are welcome to have your camera on or off as you prefer. You can also join in the discussion via the chat function via text-based chat function within Zoom. Download the AV Zoom Guide (pdf).

          If you have questions about the event, about AV, or need assistance with registering, please contact Jenni: please call 0480 385 710 or email our AV admin team.


          AV Privacy Policy

          AV Event T&Cs

            • 17 Feb 2022
            • 7:30 PM - 9:30 PM
            • Online via Zoom
            Register


            Adults Hub

            - Online Group Meeting


            About the Adults Group

            Our Adults Group is for older members of the Aspergers autistic community and those with other similar neurodiverse profiles. It is more suitable for those who are aged 35 years and over, although younger adults are welcome to join in. (Young adults may prefer to attend our Young Adults group meetings as well as or instead of this group.)

            This month, we will be talking about the diagnosis experience.


            About our Group Leaders

            This session is facilitated by the Group Leader, Colin: asadults@aspergersvic.org.au. All AV volunteer group leaders share the lived experience of their group participants and welcome new attendees. All AV group leaders have a Working with Children Check.


            Cost: $5 for AV members, $10 for non-members. FREE for holders of a +Groups Membership.

            Become an AV member today to access discounted tickets for groups and events, other members-only programs, and to support all the wonderful work our volunteers and staff team do for our community.

            If you are attending an AV group for the first time, you are welcome to register for free using our first-time attendee ticket. Please email admin@aspergersvic.org.au to access this.
            If cost is a barrier, please contact Jenni: admin@aspergersvic.org.au.


            Do I need to register?

            All attendees to AV's online and in-person groups and events must register before attending. For Zoom meetings, you need to register to access the Zoom details. For in-person meetings, all attendees need to register before attending due to DHHS COVID contact tracing requirements and venue requirements. Please register if you would like to attend to ensure you don't miss out.


            What is Zoom and how do I access the Zoom meeting?

            Zoom is a free web-based video conferencing program. You can download it for free onto your computer or phone/tablet, or you can dial in and participate via your landline or smartphone. When your registration is complete, you will receive a registration confirmation email which includes the Zoom meeting details. We have included more information below about Zoom and how to access the Zoom session. You are welcome to have your camera on or off as you prefer. You can also join in the discussion via the chat function via text-based chat function within Zoom. Download the AV Zoom Guide (pdf).


            If you have questions about the event, about AV, or need assistance with registering, please contact Jenni: please call 0480 385 710 or email admin@aspergersvic.org.au.


            AV Privacy Policy

            AV Event T&Cs

            • 24 Feb 2022
            • 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM
            • Online via Zoom
            Register



            Young Adults Hub: Online Peer Discussion -

            chat & play online games


            About our Group

            Our Young Adults group is a great place for Aspergers, autistic and other similar neurodivergent profile adults aged 18 years - 35 years (approx.) to meet, chat, and play games with no social pressure. As this is a parent/carer-free zone, we invite any parents or carers to attend our separate Parents & Carers group.


            The session is facilitated by the Young Adult team:

            • Matt - YA Group Leader
            • Lyndel - Young Adults Co-Facilitator
            • Cal, Eleanor, Tim, Deb, Todd - YA Mentors


            All AV volunteer group leaders share the lived experience of their group participants and welcome new attendees. All AV group leaders have a Working with Children Check.


            Cost: $5 for AV members, $10 for non-members. FREE for holders of a +Groups Membership.

            Become an AV member today to access discounted tickets for groups and events, members-only programs and interest groups, and to support all the wonderful work our volunteers and staff team do for our community.

            If you are attending an AV group for the first time, you are welcome to register for free using our first-time attendee ticket. Please email our AV admin team to access this.

            If cost is a barrier, please contact Jenni.


            Do I need to register?

            All attendees to AV's online and in-person groups and events must register before attending. For Zoom meetings, you need to register to access the Zoom details. For in-person meetings, all attendees need to register before attending due to DHHS COVID contact tracing requirements and venue requirements. Please register if you would like to attend to ensure you don't miss out.


            What is Zoom and how do I access the Zoom meeting?

            Zoom is a free web-based video conferencing program. You can download it for free onto your computer or phone/tablet, or you can dial in and participate via your landline or smartphone. When your registration is complete, you will receive a registration confirmation email which includes the Zoom meeting details. We have included more information below about Zoom and how to access the Zoom session.

            You are welcome to have your camera on or off as you prefer. You can also join in the discussion via the chat function via text-based chat function within Zoom. Download the AV Zoom Guide (pdf)


            If you have questions about the event, about AV, or need assistance with registering, please contact our AV admin team: call 0480 385 710 or email our AV admin team.


            AV Privacy Policy

            AV Event Terms & Conditions

          AV Peer Support Groups - Disclaimer:

          AV Peer Support Groups are not able to provide professional advice, therapy, medical advice, counselling, crisis management or case management. Our volunteer group leaders are volunteer peers: they are not mental health professionals and they are not qualified to provide crisis support or to fill the role of carer for any attendees. Attendees requiring a carer or support worker present may need to re-assess suitability before attending.  If you are looking for mental health crisis support, please visit our Professionals Directory  or browse our list of organisations offering crisis support.

          AV has become aware of groups using the AV logo or name to promote services or groups without AV approval. AV cannot provide any assurance of the quality of any group not coordinated by AV and not listed in the links above. They will not be covered by our insurance, they will not have AV Group Leader training and we cannot confirm that the quality of support they deliver fits within AV standards.


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