Blind Citizens Australia is excited to launch the Peer Connect Network; led by members for members!

The Peer Connect Network will consist of small groups of people who are blind or vision impaired who share a common interest and want to meet together to engage in a group discussion or activity.

BCA will support individual members to create, develop and lead their own peer groups. We will assist in promoting the groups so people who are blind or vision impaired can come together with others who have a similar interest. Peer support practices help to identify areas of growth, develop skills, strengthen communities and support one another through different stages of life.

There are 3 phases to this project.

  1. Proposal submission and selection of successful group leaders
  2. Training and support to develop group leader skills
  3. Launch of the groups and support to make them successful

After identifying the successful group leaders, BCA will run training to support those who want to take the lead and help their efforts be successful and sustainable. Training will include areas such as group facilitation, how to use Zoom as a host, developing group plans and goals, and much more. There will also be ongoing support for Peer Group Leaders as their groups take shape.

How to get involved

If you have an interest and wish to connect with others you can submit a proposal to be a peer group leader and/or submit suggestions for special interest peer groups. For example would you like to host a study group? Share an online workout with others? Host a local coffee catch up? or something else that you think would benefit others who are blind or vision impaired. The options are only limited to your imagination.

To be a Peer Leader in the Peer Connect Network you will need to;

  • Have good leadership skills
  • Be motivated to run an interest group with other members
  • Have an identified skill or interest area and be willing to share this with other members
  • Possess some basic computer or phone skills to use Zoom for group meetings
  • The time and motivation to work with other group members to create your Peer Connect group

Think this sounds like you? We invite you to submit a proposal to be a peer group leader. Simply send us a completed proposal for consideration and hopefully we can help you make it happen.

Please send your completed proposal form to naomi.barber@bca.org or call 1800 033 660 if you have any questions.

How is the Peer Connect Network different to the Skills Exchange program?

The Peer Connect Network focuses on training peer leaders to lead groups whereas the Skills Exchange program trains all group members to participate in a shared activity.

The Peer Connect Networks are ongoing however the Skills Exchange program will end at the end of this year and focuses on developing a product or running an event.

This program is also an Information, Linkages and Capacity Building (ILC) National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) funded initiative and forms part of the Life Ready suite of programs offered by BCA.

Peer Connect Network Proposal Form