Peer support network
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To support those affected by nausea and vomiting in pregnancy and hyperemesis gravidarum one area of our work is the provision of one-to-one peer support from volunteers who have first-hand experience of the condition and specific training, which seeks to reduce the social isolation and mental health burden of the condition. This national network of volunteers can provide people with an empowering opportunity to recover from their experience of HG and turn it into positive action. The service we provide has a positive impact on both the sufferers and supporters’ mental health, enabling them to come to terms with their own experience, rebuilding self confidence and reducing social isolation.
Creating our community is what has enabled our charity to flourish and grow and although it’s not your traditional geographically defined community, it is an incredibly strong community utilising modern communication methods to maintain a wide web of members across the country. On finding us people frequently describe a sense of having found somewhere they fit in and belong, bonded by the common experience of a pregnancy which differs so far from the norm. Many of our volunteers have developed close “real world” friendships offline with other volunteers in their area as well as nationally following conferences where they have been able to meet face to face.
Our Support Network is growing rapidly and we are always looking to recruit new Volunteer Peer Supporters.
Volunteer Peer Supporters work with sufferers on a 1-2-1 basis via text, email, phone or sometimes face to face throughout their pregnancy while symptoms persist.
To volunteer for Pregnancy Sickness Support we require that you fill in an application form and our Volunteer Coordinator will contact you for a telephone interview. We will then collect 2 references and you will complete our online training program.
We cannot accept referees who are related to the applicant. Ideally one will be professional although we understand that for some women they have been out of work for some time, in which case a personal reference by someone who holds a professional qualification will be acceptable.
Once you have been through the training and feel ready you will matched with women in your area who require support.
You will be able to change your status for periods of time if you need a break and ongoing support for you is available via the Volunteer/Support Coordinators and trustee team.
Please note that although we encourage all applications, only people who have actually suffered nausea and vomiting in pregnancy or hyperemesis gravidarum will be able to support other sufferers via the support network. You cannot volunteer for a oeer support position whilst pregnant.
Duties may include the following:
- To provide support and information to sufferers and ex-sufferers of NVP and Hyperemesis Gravidarum, and their families, using text, email, phone, via our forum or sometimes face to face.
- To deliver talks and presentations on the work of PSS using the standard materials provided. Wherever possible to set out a standard display of leaflets and other information about PSS.
- To assist in the distribution of leaflets and materials in local hospitals and health centres.
- To fundraise for the charity through Team PSS - full support and resources are available from our Volunteer Coordinator.
- To liaise with the Volunteer/Support Coordinators on a regular basis and attend training, meetings and conferences where possible.
- This list is only indicative, and there may be other tasks that may be requested if appropriate.
For this role we are looking for someone with the following skills and abilities:
- Ability to work in a professional and safe manner, maintaining confidentiality and integrity at all times.
- Sound listening skills.
- Experience of nausea and vomiting in pregnancy or hyperemesis gravidarum
- Ability to work without close supervision.
Suffering from Nausea and Vomiting in Pregnancy or HG can be a lonely and emotional experience.
"The support I received over the past 6 weeks from PSS helped get me through what has been the toughest time of my life. Having someone who really understood the condition helped us through and crucially, at times gave me really useful information I didn't get from my own medical practitioners. In my experience, HG is such a debilitating and lonely struggle, the more support you get the better chance you have of surviving it"
Lisa, from London.
“My husband was amazing, and contacting Pregnancy Sickness Support was the best thing I could have done. It was hard to look at a screen for very long, so emailing, texting and even talking on the phone was hard but just knowing there was someone there who cared, understood and would text/email weekly (even when I didn’t respond) made me realise I wasn’t alone.”
Mandy HG Survivor