Introduction HOPE (Help Overcome Problems Effectively), is a Cognitive Based programme aimed at promoting positive thinking. Originally designed for cancer survivors we have run HOPE in a hospice setting for people withlife limiting illness/conditionsand for carers.
Aim The programme consists of a closed group with 2 h weekly workshops over a six week period. The HOPE facilitators use evidence based activities which include self-management, coping strategies, goal setting, confidence building, and relaxation and communication skills.
HOPE groups were run for patients and carers.
Participants were asked to evaluate the courses, forms were not anonymous to enable comparisons with follow up evaluations.
A ‘reunion’ of previous HOPE attendees was held to offer an opportunity to reflect on the impact of the course.
Feedback was collated and themes analysed.
Some changes to the existing programme had to be made to take into account, the Palliative participants.
Environmental adaptation had to be made to accommodate physical/sensory requirements.
Positive group interaction was paramount to both participants and facilitators. Cohesion and feeling secure within the group allowed open, honest conversations.
Friendships were formed, which encouraged social meetings.
A fluid and flexible approach throughout the programme was needed to accommodate hospital appointments, and deteriorating health.
In the follow up sessions some previous participants had died which was acknowledged and shared in the group.
Conclusion Feedback to date have been very positive.
A shorter programme is to be trialled as commitment to 6 weeks was too difficult for some participants.
The effectiveness of HOPE comes from the interaction and sharing of ideas from within the group itself. Both carers and people living with Life Limiting Illness appeared to grow in confidence, become more positive and improve their communication skills through attendance at the group.
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