The Greater Delaware Valley Chapter sponsors self-help groups throughout the 18-county service area. Self-help groups provide opportunities to gain peer support and receive information about the latest research, treatments, programs and services available to those with MS. Members gain practical tips and support from others who have shared similar experiences, as well as professional advice from members of our Speakers Bureau.
The group experience helps members become more empowered to cope with the challenges of MS in a supportive and confidential environment. In addition to monthly meetings, some groups also organize recreational outings for members or focus on advocacy issues.
The chapter supports self-help groups by providing the initial orientation and ongoing training to leaders and co-leaders. Leaders receive regular research and program updates, as well as a chapter and national newsletter with program ideas, updates and tips for running meetings.
If you are interested in being listed in our Speakers Bureau complete the application below (only one version please):
- Paper version (.docx) -- download, complete and mail or fax it back to us
- Electronic version -- complete and submit online
If you are interested in starting a new self-help group in your area, call us at 1-800-548-4611.
Self-help Story: Sue Salomon
Sue Salomon, who was diagnosed in 1989, has been attending the Let's Talk MS self-help group in Malvern, Pa. for more than five years.
Sue began attending the group after she received a flyer from the local chapter. "Even though I was doing pretty well, I thought about it for a while," she said. "I thought let me go and see and connect with some people I could talk to. I'm a believer in self-help groups anyway."
"Since I've started, I've learned so much about MS," she said. "I enjoy being part of the group. We have fun. We laugh. It's a whole experience."
She said the location was convenient and she found that there were a lot of people she could relate to. Plus, she has nothing but kind words for the group leader, Janice Park.
"I think Janice is a great leader," she said. She added that Janice has gotten some great speakers to talk to the group, she's great at steering the conversations and is always up on the most current research. "She's a fountain of information, and she makes it so accessible for everyone. You always learn something. And she's always a good ear."
To anyone who's on the fence about joining a self-help group, Sue says try it. "Go and see and listen. Nobody's going to make you participate if you don't want to. Come and see what you think. There's never an obligation to attend another meeting. It doesn't hurt to try."