This session is to be utilised if you are running a full Safer Person Project course.
The Safer Person Project is a course for young people in which builds up key skills in supporting friends. These skills will equip them to be better friends generally, but the course will also offer young people who participate an opportunity to explore topics including relationships, LGBT+ identities and mental well-being.
The course consists of four participatory and engaging topic based sessions, each lasting around 90 minutes. They are also designed to encourage young people to increase their knowledge and awareness, whilst exploring their attitudes and opinions. At the end of the four topic based sessions, a project legacy session may also happen, highlighting what has been learned.
Young people will:
- Understand the aims of the course
- Agree to participate
- Set groundrules
- Start to explore what “support” means
- Sticky notes
- Flip chart paper
- Pens, felt pens and/or markers
- Read the entire session plan and familiarise yourself with the activities.
- Create a schedule of the dates and times of the full project meeting dates and times, and print enough copies for each participant.
PROCEDURE – TOTAL TIME: 75 MINUTES
What is the Safer Person Project? 5 mins
- Explain to the group that we will be working together for six sessions; each session will be around 90 minutes long.
- This first session is shorter as it is the introduction and a chance for people to get to know each other.
- Ask the group what they think the “Safer Person Project” is about. Explain by reading the session aims.
- Tell the young people that at the end of the course they will get a certificate!
Introductions – 10 mins
- Ask the group to sit in a circle and explain that we are going to introduce ourselves using our names and pronouns. Ask: What is a pronoun? It’s a word we use to refer to someone when we are not using their name (e.g. she/her, they/them or he/him)? Ask: Why is asking pronouns important?
- Start by introducing yourself with your name and pronouns, and then go around the group asking each young person to introduce themselves.
Warm up – The Sun Shines Down – 10 mins
- Ask the group to sit in a circle on chairs, you should stand in the centre.
- As the person in the middle, begin a sentence with “the sun shines down on everyone who…” and complete the sentence so that it is true for you, e.g. “… had toast for breakfast.” Everyone who had toast for breakfast stands up and swaps seats, leaving one person without a seat, now in the middle.
- The person in the middle starts their own sentence “the sun shines down on everyone who…” and finishes it in a way that is true for them them. Everyone for whom the statement is true stands up and swaps seats, leaving someone in the middle.
- Continue until time is up or everyone is exhausted!
Groundrules and Group Contract – 15 mins
- Split the whole group into smaller groups (as you think will work) and give each group a pieve of flipchart paper and pens.
- On their flip chart ask them to write what they think should be the groundrules for the Safer Person Project. You may encourage them to list things like:
- Be respectful
- Listen to others
- Share only what you are happy is then “in the world”
When lists are exhausted, compare notes between the groups and create one large agreed group contract that everybody can sign. You may choose to hang this on the wall for each session as a reminder.
Things We Might Need Help With – 25 mins
- Tell the group that we are going to look at where we might get support
- Split the group in to smaller groups with a minimum of three in each group and give each small group a piece of flip chart paper and some marker pens.
- Ask one young person in each group to draw the outline of a body on their flip chart.
- Once done, ask the groups to write down (inside the outline of the body) all the issues or feelings that a young person might seek support for. Give the groups five minutes to do this.
- Ask each group to feedback and record the feedback on a separate piece of flip chart. Discuss the feedback.
- Next, give each small group a pile of sticky notes and ask them to write on individual sticky notes the people or places young people might go to for support. These get stuck around the body outline on the flip chart paper. Feedback and discuss. (N.B. if no young people identify friends as a source of support, raise this and discuss.)
- Summarise the session by highlighting that this course is about being able to talk/communicate with friends more easily about a range of topics and that “peer support” i.e. supportive friends is a really important form of support, but that keeping yourself safe through such support is also important too.
Reflection and Planning – 10 mins
- Get the group back in to a circle and ask them to call out what they think Safer Person Project is all about. Ensure they have an understanding (look back at the aims of the session).
- Remind them of the logistics of the future sessions i.e. how many, where and when, and get the group to agree that, as far as possible, they will attend each session.
- Tell the group that the last session will be a chance to produce a poster to reflect what they have learnt on the course and spread positive messages to other young people. (If you don’t have funding to produce a poster tell the group the final session will be a chance to look at what the key messages might be that we want to pass on to other young people.)