Buddy Care Forums

 The purpose behind all Buddy Care Forums is peer-to-peer support & assistance in regaining control of our lives; and support in the healing journey.
We do this by creating an environment of
SAFETY that promotes CALMNESS in decision-making through CONNECTEDNESS with others.


People helping people with practical human kindness

Buddy Care Community Trauma Support Forums are a network of support groups (including online Facebook groups) for people who face challenges coping with traumatic events in their lives, the lives of a family member or close friend; and professional caregivers who are exposed to secondary vicarious trauma and compassion fatigue.

                               CLOSED Facebook Forum                                                                                          OPEN Facebook Forums
www.facebook.com/groups/buddycarevhv/                    www.facebook.com/BuddyCareCapeTown  www.facebook.com/ptgrr                        

 Cape Town Central. St Mary's Church, Station Road, Woodstock. meets Wednesday evenings 6.30-8.30pm and Saturday Mornings 10.00am - Noon. Contact Ann on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

 Durban.  Contact Brian on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

  WhatsApp Support Groups

Cape Town    *    Durban    *    Christian

Contact Brian on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 


To establish your Buddy Care Forum anywhere, contact Brian on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 


What Buddy Care Forums represent:

A unique pathway to help

An opportunity to benefit from collective wisdom 

An opportunity to understand and de-stigmatise trauma, distress and grief 

A means to renewed sense of self-respect,

An opportunity to re-discover and activate your own personal, hidden resources 

An opportunity to receive and give hope, inspiration and empowerment for recovery 

An opportunity to give help to others, as equal-to-equal 


A unique pathway to help which is: 

  • non-threatening.
  • affordable to all.
  • both complementary to other services or stand-alone.
  • open to freedom of participation, when and where required, without waiting lists or limitations on number of visits.

An opportunity to benefit from collective wisdom, providing:

  • access to accumulated knowledge, from multiple perspectives.
  • new insights, widening the basis of understanding of common challenges, and building meaning in your life.
  • an unmatched source of support and inspiration and empowerment, reducing the burden of living with a traumatic or emotional health challenges.
  • self-respect, knowing that your wisdom is valued.

An opportunity to understand and de-stigmatise trauma, distress and grief, enabling you to:

  • have the freedom to be yourself without fear of rejection, ridicule or humiliation.
  • gain an understanding that your life experience is accepted and valued.

A means to renewed sense of self-respect, understanding and belonging through being part of a circle of a caring community, providing:

  • knowledge that you are NOT isolated.
  • strength gained from the sense of purpose that is being a realisable,  important part of a community.
  • opportunities to make authentic connections that increase well-being socially, mentally, physically and spiritually.
  • means to alleviate stress and improve well-being for careers.

An opportunity to re-discover and activate your own personal, hidden resources, enabling you to:

  • share challenges with those who understand.
  • grow in confidence and be encouraged to share and explore their issues in increasing breadth and depth.
  • believe that you can and do have control over their own life, well-being and happiness
  • take on responsibility for your own journey towards recovery and health.
  • gain and share knowledge of skills, treatment pathways and tools that have proven useful.
  • be strengthened, and take that strength out into the community.

An opportunity to receive and give hope, inspiration and empowerment for recovery, providing:

  • from the recovery stories of known others, proof that recovery is possible.
  • encouragement from others.
  • an understanding that recovery and health is a journey.

An opportunity to give help to others, as equal-to-equal, through:

  • sharing.
  • encouraging listening, as well as being listened to.
  • offering support to others from their lived experience.
  • experiencing the personal strength and healing which comes from helping others .
  • making a contribution to the greater good of the community.

The Buddy Fellowship:
“The best way we can keep what we have gained, is to share it with others.”


I Need To Care. I Need Care Too.

I am here today because I have made a choice to care.

I am special, yet however special I may be, I am not superior,

nor my troubles any more or any less challenging, than any other person who seeks Buddy Care.


In all these things I pledge you the same respect in return:

On caring:

I have chosen to care for myself.

I need you to care that I need to care for myself, for without being strong I cannot care for anyone else.

I offer you my care. However week and feeble my care for you may seem, I humbly acknowledge that by just being in the presence of others needing care, I make a positive difference.

I will never offer you more care than that for which you ask, for I accept that I will not know your true pain.

Should you ask for my care, I concede that I too can grow by sharing what I have learned along the way.

On Sharing:

I appreciate that the words ‘listen’ and ‘silent’ have the same letters and that the greatest respect that I can show you, is to listen to what you have to say, without giving uninvited response of any form – word, body or soul.

Should you request my response and I am unable to give the support you may be seeking, I offer no apology for in my heart I wished I could heal you as I wish to heal myself.

I ask you not to tell me your story without asking my permission. As much as I may wish to hear you and in so doing help you, I cannot risk that your story might trigger in me a response that limits my belief in my own healing or cause some setback.

On Judgement:

I wish you to respect that unless I acknowledge otherwise, my trauma is my trauma and my healing path is my healing path.

It may well seem to you that you, or someone you know, has walked in my shoes, but with sincere respect for your good intentions, these remain my shoes and the complex miles I have travelled in them belong entirely to me. 

I appreciate your advice and assistance but should I choose not to follow your guidance I ask that you not judge me at any time, now, or in the future, directly or when I am not present.

I ask that you be faithful to me in the small, things for in the small things the strength of our Buddy Care lies.

On healing:

I concede I cannot heal if I remain in a state of victim hood. I need all help to take the first step to taking back control in my life.

As comforting as the term may be I am not just a “survivor” for if I remain in the state of “survival” I shall not have acquired the means to grow and thrive in my life.

So, I ask that you offer me a chance to find my way out of the “victim and survivor” space, to encourage me and to show me by example the road to forego, forgive or forget the deeds of those who caused my emotional trauma, even if that person is, or continues to be, myself.

I appreciate that healing is a process and hope that you will be supportive and encouraging for my healing. I thank you for being a part of the process, one day at a time, one occasion at a time.

I recognize that deep within me there are true virtues; true values and true character strengths that will help me heal if I recognise and acknowledge them.

I appreciate that at times I need to be pushed beyond my comfort levels in order to take the next step in healing, but be gentle with me if I seem afraid and as I seek the courage to grow.

On Masking and Numbing

I concede that one of my greatest challenges is to discover, identify and overcome those habits I have adopted in order to mask my pain or numb my responses. 

Although I find comfort in the space these masks provide for me, I recognise that they deny me permission to truly heal and cause me to waste my own time and energy and that of others.

I ask that you not give grounding to any mask of your own in Buddy Care. Please acknowledge that as a coping mechanism your mask is only temporary and not a permanent solution.

Should the influence of narcotics or alcohol be a hindrance to Buddy Care I must ask you to leave. I beg you to seek help, because I care that you heal and under such influence you can never truly heal.

On others:

I must recognise strength in diversity as a means to my healing. I submit that it is only in listening to the origins, journeys and solutions of others that I will truly explore my own emotional conflicts.

Humbly I submit that my views on politics, religion and money are strictly my own and have no place being argued in a Buddy Forum. However, I will not forget the possibility that politics, religion and money may be at the heart of the emotional trauma of another.  


Without pleading any religious significance I ask that you stand with me in the wisdom of Mother Theresa:

What I do you cannot do; but what you do, I cannot do. The needs are great, and none of us, including me, ever do great things. But we can all do small things, with great love, and together we can do something wonderful.