Authentic Connections Groups
Building strong, supportive relationships to foster resilience
About AC Groups
AC Groups is a nonprofit that fosters people’s resilience by ensuring they have dependable, supportive relationships in their everyday lives.
Our nonprofit offers the evidence-based Authentic Connections (AC) Groups program, where participants meet virtually, once per week for 12-weeks. Groups include 5-6 people from similar life situations or roles. For examples of the diverse groups of participants in prior AC Groups, please see Testimonials.
Facilitated by experienced clinicians, all AC Group sessions are focused on developing positive coping skills and forging dependable close relationships. So at the end of the 12-week program, participants leave with not only well-established support networks, but also new skills, tools, and handouts that they can draw upon — and share with others — in the future.
Regarding our fees, for individuals our suggested donation is $100 per group session, reduced to $50 through Fall 2022. This said, participants can certainly request a sliding scale fee. We have never turned anyone away for lack of funds. Participants may also sign up for six weeks at a time (with the option to renew for the second half of the program). For organizations, the suggested cost for a group of six participants is $3600 ($50 per person per session vs. the typical $100 per person for individuals). When signing up for three or more groups, organizations receive a 15% or more discount on all services.
Who are these groups for? Are they for you?
Authentic Connections Groups are for everybody seeking to build dependable support systems that last over time, and can buffer them through times of adversity or stress! They are especially valuable for folks who take care of others at home or work, teaching new coping and relationship-building skills while ensuring that they stay replenished themselves.
What makes the AC Groups Program Different?
- Allows people to join evidence-based groups from anywhere with video-conferencing
- Helps participants enhance supportive, nurturing relationships, with special attention to those in charge of caring for others.
- Provides a structured program focused on topics known to be important in forging and maintaining close relationships — which are the cornerstone of resilience.
- Has been validated in scientific publications, and is recommended by the National Academies of Science, and Engineering as an effective intervention to foster resilience.
Frequently Asked Questions
Who are these groups for? Are they right for me?
Authentic Connections (AC) Groups are for everybody seeking to build strong, dependable support systems that last over time, and can buffer them through times of adversity or stress! This said, we’ve found that groups are especially well-suited for folks who help or take care of others at home or work. They teach new coping and relationship-building skills that participants can pass on to those they support while ensuring that they are replenished themselves on an ongoing basis.
What happens during group sessions? What does the facilitator do?
Trained, experienced facilitators (who receive ongoing supervision) bring significant warmth, empathy, and genuine caring to each meeting. They deliberately foster participants’ authentic connections within and outside group, while leading focused discussions on the topic of the day. After each session, they send participants a handout that summarizes major themes covered and specific skills learned (which they can then share with others in their own lives).
How are groups formed? What happens after I submit an application form?
Once we receive your completed application, a senior staff member will contact you to schedule a one-on-one consultation that is free of charge. After learning a bit more about you, our Project Director will place you in a group with others based on common themes such as roles at work (e.g., clinicians), ages of children (if any), shared life events, other similarities, and availability of times to meet.
What are some of the AC Group session topics?
Some examples of topics are Minimizing rumination; Contagion of others’ pain; Obstacles to connecting authentically; Shame versus self-compassion; Limits and boundaries in close relationships.
Join A Group
“Given the low cost and ease of access—from mothers’ own workplaces, homes, or even while traveling—such virtual groups might be considered a useful model to be explored further in future work with mothers.”
Ambassadors of AC Groups
SUPPORT AC GROUPS
Your donations will help to expand our offerings, addressing widespread needs for support especially given challenges arising from the COVID-19 pandemic. Donations will contribute to participant fees for those who some assistance, and will help defray costs for the nonprofit’s staff, external consultants, and overall infrastructure.