Al-Anon Family Groups provide support to anyone whose life is, or has been, affected by someone else’s drinking, regardless of whether that person is still drinking or a part of their lives. Alateen meetings are specifically for those age 12-17 who have been affected by someone else’s drinking. A free helpline is also available.
Resources: Support Groups
Alcoholics Anonymous provide a safe space for individuals to discuss their personal experiences with alcohol with the overall aim of overcoming alcohol addiction. Meetings are open to people in any stage of recovery.
Both open and closed meetings are available throughout Bristol and the surrounding areas, face-to-face and online. National helpline also available.
Bath Mind offer a range of services and support to people living in Bath and North East Somerset, including befriending, counselling, community groups, a crisis helpline, and practical support.
Please note that these services are only available in Bath and North East Somerset, and Bristol Mind is a separate organisation offering different services.
Bipolar UK is dedicated to supporting individuals with bipolar, their families and carers. Services include support groups (the Bristol Support Group meets online), a peer support line, and online information.
Bluebell provides services for all parents, partners and their infants affected by mild to moderate anxiety, depression and other perinatal mental health difficulties, during pregnancy and up to 2 years after birth in Bristol, North Somerset, South Gloucestershire, Bath & NE Somerset and South Devon. Dedicated support is available for mums and for dads, as well as one-to-one and small group support.
Brigstowe work to support people with long-term health conditions, including HIV and AIDS, with a range of advice services and peer support. Dedicated services are also available for migrants and asylum seekers living with HIV.
BASS Autism Services for Adults provide service to adults with autism spectrum conditions and professionals and carers who support them. These include assessment and diagnosis on referral, advice services, post-diagnostic support, one-to-one appointments, group sessions and training.
The Bristol Dementia Wellbeing Service delivers a personalised package of dementia support to patients across Bristol. This includes healthcare, social and activity groups, practical support, and services for carers.
Bristol Drugs Project provide free and confidential support to people who are looking for help with their own alcohol and drug use, and the people who care for and about them. Services include support groups, drop-ins, harm reduction, and a dedicated helpline. Specific and targeted support is available for children and young people, students, older people, women, and the LGBTQ+ community. A specific service is available for recent drug and alcohol-related bereavements.
The Bristol Eating Disorder Peer Support Group has been running for over thirty years. They aim to provide a space for sufferers (aged 18 years and over) and for friends/families/carers to support one another.
Hearing Voices bring together a number of people who share the experience of hearing voices, to help and support each other. This group aims to understand voice-hearing and intrusive thoughts through sharing information and experiences. The self-help group is for people with experience of hearing voices.
The Carers Centre is a local charity supporting people in Bristol and South Gloucestershire who care for family and friends. They offer expert advice, emotional support, telephone counselling, and understanding, and support for child carers. All services are free. CarersLine helpline for carers also available
Changes Bristol provide peer support to adults suffering mental distress. Weekly meetings take place in the local area and online, and a befriending service is available to Bristol residents.
Cocaine Anonymous West Country welcomes anyone with a drug or alcohol problem, using the twelve-step recovery program to support people to stop using mind-altering substances.
Crossroads is a social support group where transgender people of all kinds can get together, swap knowledge and experience, and have a fun relaxed time. The group is for adults only, and changing facilities are provided for those who need them.
FFLAG is a national voluntary organisation and charity dedicated to supporting families and their LGBT+ loved ones. An FFLAG group meets in Bristol to bring together carers and parents of LGBT+ young people. carers
Galop are a LGBT+ anti-abuse charity, providing support to LGBT+ people who have experienced abuse and violence. They provide helplines, advocacy, online support communities, and dedicated services for LGBT+ children and young people.
Gamblers Anonymous provide support groups to help people overcome problem gambling.
Mothers for Mothers offer a range of perinatal mental health support services. Most of their services, including helplines, one-to-one sessions, and counselling, are directed at mothers, but monthly support sessions are also available for fathers.
Narcotics Anonymous is a community of people who support each other to achieve and maintain a drug free life. Support is offered through support group meetings and a helpline.
Nilaari are a BAME-led charity offering culturally appropriate and sensitive support, including talking therapies, direct support, and support groups. Specific projects target women generally, BAME migrant women specifically, and men with complex needs, including those with a history of offending.
Non-Binary South West is a support group for people based in the South West of England who identify beyond binary gender. Meetings are held in Exeter.
North Somerset People First now also run some services in Bristol. They promote and encourage people with a learning disability, difficulty and/or autism to speak up for themselves, empowering them to be in control of their own lives, now and in the future.
NSPF’s self advocacy services support individuals from the age of 16 to speak up for themselves, be more confident and aware of their rights. These services include Speaking Up Groups, Consultations, Person Centred Planning and Advocacy, and Training Programmes.
OCD Action provide support and information to anybody affected by OCD. Services include a helpline and online support groups.
Off The Record BANES provide a range of free services for children and young people, including counselling, advocacy, listening support, and targeted support for LGBTQ youth.
Off The Record (Bristol and South Gloucestershire) provide a range of free services for children and young people, including counselling, projects and activities, support groups, and targeted support for LGBTQ youth.
Overeaters Anonymous is an organisation that offers support groups, based on the 12-step recovery programme, for individuals looking to recover from compulsive overeating. Meetings are available both face-to-face and online.
Parents of Jewish Gays and Lesbians is a support group for anyone Jewish with an LGBTQ+ child or grandchild who would like to meet people with similar experiences.
Rethink offer a range of support groups for people with mental illness and for carers.
Bristol charity Changes hold four peer support groups which are categorised as closed safe spaces because they are only open to specific members – Women’s, Men’s, Women of Colour, and LGBTQIA+ online meetings. These groups are open to anybody identifying as part of the community that the group serves.
Sex Addicts Anonymous (SAA) is an organisation providing support to individuals who want to heal from engaging in harmful sexual behaviours. Support is provided through local weekly support groups, of which there are several in Bristol. SAA also operate a phone helpline.
SMART Recovery promote choice in recovery from addiction through a national network of mutual aid support meetings.
Social Anxiety Bristol (SA Bristol) is a self-help group open to anyone who experiences or has experienced social anxiety. The group offers a safe place to talk about your social anxiety and get help and advice from like-minded people who have been through similar experiences.
Survivors of Bereavement by Suicide offer peer support to adults (aged 18+) who have been bereaved by suicide. Services include support groups, including a dedicated online group for men, a community forum, and telephone and email helpline services.
SWEDA offer a range of services for people with eating disorders across Somerset and the surrounding areas, including counselling and support groups.
The Compassionate Friends provide befriending, support and a helpline for bereaved parents, grandparents or siblings who have suffered the death of a child or children of any age and from any cause. Online and local support groups are also available.
TOP UK (Triumph Over Phobia) specialise in supported self-help for sufferers of phobias, OCD, and other related anxiety disorders. Peer support groups run regularly.