Activities Designed to Build the Relationships for the Post-Funding Peer Support Program
The School of Social Welfare, University at Albany, SUNY provides a Peer Support Network which is a process of individual and group support for SEED clients. MSW students offer individual and family support and develop the Peer Group agenda based on the client needs assessment.
Peer support includes weekly group meetings after each business training class. These meetings give the opportunity to build stronger ties between the clients and for them to discuss their stresses, goals, fears, hopes and issues. Prior to each training class, MSW students have both scheduled individual meetings with SEED clients and open office time to discuss individual issues in a private setting.
Peer Support also involves quarterly meetings for all current SEED clients and all of those SEED clients that have received a loan. These meetings include an educational component based on expressed client interests, such as Health Exchanges, web site development, Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) and Minority &/or Women-Owned Businesses. There is also a sharing component involving peer support sharing and discussions of issues important to them including hiring good employees, stress reduction and service networking.