chapter  12
24 Pages

The Involvement of Self-Help Groups with Mental Health and Medical Professionals: The Self-Helpers' Perspective

Self-help groups, by definition, are collectives of people sharing a common serious life-disrupting predicament, not charging for participation in the group, and retaining ownership and control over the workings of the group (see Katz, & Bender, 1976; Levy, 1976; Jacobs & Goodman, 1989). Many believe the empowerment inherent in the self-help ethos of (1) giving as well as getting help, and (2) retaining control over the functioning, goals and ultimate destiny of the group, is central to the successful functioning of these groups (e.g., Riessman, 1990, Maton, 1988).