The world is still in the grip of the Covid-19 pandemic and with global lockdowns and mass unemployment and redundancy, many people are feeling the pressure and thanks to VoIP technology, there are online support groups that offer virtual counselling and access to valuable resources. The telehealth sector has emerged alongside Covid-19, offering people essential support when they really need it, while groups that used to meet regularly, now Zoom call for a virtual meeting.

Addiction Groups
Facebook hosts many addiction groups, which are usually closed (you have to apply to join) and members share information and text each other for support. Organisations such as AA have gone completely digital with their programs and with success stories such as Kickback Recovery in Sheffield, UK, substance addiction groups are critical for the success of all the people involved.

First Responder Support
Leading groups such as https://firstresponderretirement.com/ are dedicated to offering resources and support to emergency workers who are retired, and when you think about it, going from real-life emergencies day in day out for many years, to the life of a retired person is quite a jump! There is definitely something lacking and the aim of the support group is to help the retiree replace that lost feeling with something positive.

Suicide Prevention
The pandemic is the reasons for the sudden spike in suicides around the world and wherever you happen to live, there are online solutions where you can talk with a qualified counsellor and the service is free and available 24/7. Counsellors donate a portion of their time to be available for online support, so there is always someone ready to listen and offer support.

Relationship Difficulties
The many lockdowns over the last 2 years have caused people to encounter relationship problems and being in the same physical space for long periods can only make things worse. If you search with Google for ‘relationship guidance near me’ you will find an online group that offer help, which might involve you and your partner having a virtual discussion with the counsellor using Zoom.

Remote Healthcare
Due to the Covid crisis, medical professionals have turned to digital solutions to offer patient care and the term ‘telehealth’ was born. Most GPs now ‘see’ all their patients in a virtual consultation, which eliminates human contact. Elderly people who live alone in remote areas have Zoom calls with remotely located healthcare workers and should there be a need for a visit, the caregiver will make the arrangements.

Online support groups are critical during the pandemic and will become an integral part of our lives.

Christina Jared