We’re so proud of our support group. It’s a fantastic supportive place to be. We celebrate each other’s good days and help each other through not so good days.

The group is a “closed” Facebook group – meaning that it doesn’t show on your profile at all, and no-one outside the group can see anything you post – they can’t even see that you’re a member from your profile. You’re secret safe with us.

With there being over 900 members, we do ask that you keep to our guidelines. This is for everyone’s benefit – and they’re proven to keep Spark a fantastic place to be a part of.

Before you go any further, we’d like you to read and agree to our guidelines, which are in place to keep everyone safe, and the group running smoothly.

Spark Support Group Guidelines

About the Group

  • The group is monitored between 9 am and midnight by trained moderating staff and managers. Messages and reported posts will be responded to as quickly as possible, and within 24 hours at most.
  • If you are worried about a fellow group member out of these hours, please direct them if safe to do so, towards our crisis support page: sparksupport.co.uk/crisis
  • This group is a closed Facebook group – unless someone is also a member, they cannot see you are a member or anything you post.
  • The group runs on the honour system – please support as much as you receive as and when you feel able to.

Whilst in the group

  • Be respectful to others at all times.
    The odd swear word is fine, we’re all adults here, but if it’s aimed at someone directly, or directed towards a section of society, it is not okay. Posts containing racism, sexism, bigotry, homophobia and/or transphobia will be removed and the member permanently banned. Please be cautious about posting sexual content as well, as this may affect other members.
  • This is a place that is designed to be free of judgement.
    If a disagreement should occur in the group, please distance yourself from it and refrain from taking sides. If it upsets you – please report the post to the mod team.
  • Confidentiality is absolutely key with the group.
    You must not share anything from the group to anywhere else. What happens in the group, must stay within the group.
  • This is not an emergency medical or crisis service.
    Whilst we want to help as many people as possible – we have to draw the line here, as we are not trained to support people in this situation. Should a crisis situation occur in the group, we take all steps we are able to, to ensure the safety of the member in question, including contacting the emergency services and making use of Facebook’s reporting tools, sharing information with them if they request it.
  • Any advice given or received with regards to medication is not given as professional advice and is to be used in conjunction with advice from a trained medical professional, such as your GP. Urgent advice can be sought from the NHS 24/7 by dialling 111.
  • Political or religious topics are not to be discussed in the group.
    Spark Support is strictly neutral, and we will remove any posts of this topic from the group. These posts tend to spark unnecessary arguments, fallouts and divide the group. That’s not what we’re here for.
  • Anti-medication posts are grossly inappropriate for a group of this nature – these will be immediately removed, along with the member.
  • We cannot facilitate discussion on drugs or medication that are illegal in the UK.
    We can’t do this because of both Facebook’s community standards, and UK law. This includes drugs obtained illegally (i.e. without a valid prescription, for a prescription-only drug). Doing so jeopradises the future of the Spark group.
  • No selling, spam, crowdsourcing or promotions are allowed in the group. 
    We don’t allow any form of selling or spam in the group. Promotions and crowdsourcing are only allowed with the express written consent of one of the senior members of Spark Support’s management team. These types of posts can push down people in need of support, which isn’t acceptable.
  • We ask that you use trigger warnings when discussing certain topics in the group.
    These should be formatted in the standard way of TW: [xx], and then no less than 10 lines with an asterisk (*) on. This allows people to control what they see.
    The topics that we ask for TWs to be used on are:
    Suicide – using TW: Sui
    Self-harm – using TW: SH
    Abuse, encompassing sexual, physical and emotional – using TW: Ab
    Eating Disorders – using TW: ED
    Please be aware that we are strict on the use of these – for everyone’s benefit. If they are used incorrectly, a moderator will ask you to add, amend or remove a post within 30 minutes.
  • You must not post any graphic detail, plans or images on the group.
    These go against Facebook’s Community Standards and jeopardises the future of the group. Posts containing these will be removed from the group.

Moderators and Management

  • If you see a post that contravenes the guidelines – please do not take it upon yourself to deal with this – report it to a moderator, either by taking a screenshot and messaging one of us or by using the “Report to Admin” option on the post.
  • A moderator’s decision is final and binding. If you believe that a situation has been miss-handled by a moderator, please see the section on making a complaint below. You must not discuss this in the group – moderators will only ever ask you to amend something via private message, please afford us the same dignity!
  • Please remember that if a moderator asks you to amend a post, or if we remove a post – it’s okay! We understand everyone make mistakes – and it is never personal.
  • If you are upset by a moderator’s decision, please do not post in the group threatening to leave. This upsets members, divides the group, and undermines the extremely hard work of the moderating team.

Outside of the Group

  • Friend requests and private message requests are only to be sent with the express permission of the other person. Should this happen, you understand that any exchange away from the Spark group cannot be moderated by us, and is your sole responsibility.
  • Please do not post to the group asking for people to add you on Facebook, or other forms of social media – these will be removed by us.
  • Because Spark is a charitable organisation, we can’t allow any spin-off groups to be started which aren’t fully run by us, using our name.

If you feel that a post has been dealt with unfairly, that a moderator has treated you otherwise in accordance with these guidelines, or have a general complaint about the group, please email gareth@sparksupport.co.uk

Come on in and join us!