4 ways Elefriends is different from other mental health communities

Elefriends is a supportive online community where you can be yourself. We all know what it's like to struggle sometimes, but now there's a safe place to listen, share and be heard. There are lots of different peer support communities out there, but here's why Elefriends is a little bit different.

Elefriends was created by the community

Elefriends has been led by its members from the very beginning. It started life as a Facebook page for Mind's campaign about mental health at work called, "The Elephant in the Room". People were giving such great support to each other that Mind held a series of workshops with them to create their own unique space. From these workshops, we found that what elefriends wanted was somewhere that had a friendly ear, was big (enough for everyone), safe and strong - like an elephant.

Elefriends' development continues to be shaped by the community, with regular surveys for feedback and suggestions, a feedback wall and online and offline workshops.

Elefriends is safe

Elefriends follow a communally agreed upon set of house rules, which are there to help people use the site safely. "The Ele" is the community guide. He's there to welcome new members, to help people get started (check out his videos here) and to be a safety net for the herd. Elefriends can report any content that worries them and can private message the Ele with any questions or concerns.

The, "Ele handlers" are the community moderators who are there from 10 am-midnight every day to respond to reports, remove anything that might not be safe, and to support elefriends in getting offline support when things are tough.

You don't have to use your real name, and you can be as anonymous as you like. There's no pressure - share as much or as little as you feel comfortable with. Other elefriends can't see your email address or location, and posts aren't accessible to search engines and can only be seen by other registered members.

Elefriends is inclusive and elefriends are equal

As long as you're over 18, Elefriends is for you. Posts aren't separated into different forums for different things - there's one place for everyone to share. It can be hard to find the words sometimes, so that's why Elefriends has buttons you can use to let someone know you've heard them. There's no hierarchy on Elefriends, nor are post counts displayed next to posts. Whether you're a brand new Ele or you've been there a while, the herd will have a warm welcome for you. The Ele's part of the community, too, and regularly shares tips, blogs, videos and questions the community might find helpful or interesting.

Elefriends is about feelings, not diagnosis

Elefriends are the experts in their own mental health. You don't have to have a diagnosis to join, or even identify as having a mental health issue - Elefriends is for anyone who struggles sometimes, in the good times, and the bad.

So if Elefriends sounds like the place for you, be part of the heard at elefriends.org.uk. You can also find the app on Google Play and the App Store.


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