Ian Pepper BARCA.jpg

I work for Barca-Leeds, which is a community-based charity that delivers transformational projects for adults, children, young people, and families in Leeds.

As part of this, I help run the West Leeds Men’s Network; a men’s support group designed to help combat social isolation amongst men in the Armley and Bramley areas.

We recognise that social anxiety (not helped by the pandemic) is often an issue for our existing and potential members who are reaching out for help and support.

We take steps to make things easier for those interested in being involved. Here are some of the ways we welcome members:

  • An introductory call with the project leader – This is to discuss the potential member’s needs and expectations around the group. We explain the details of the group and how it operates.
  • Initial meeting – This takes place outside the group on first attendance if the individual wishes.
  • Attending with support - Initially members are welcome to attend with a support worker or friend until they feel settled.
  • Ground rules explained - There are formal group ground rules, which are decided upon by the members and clearly explained before initial attendance.
  • Tailored communication - Communication between group sessions is delivered in a way which suites the member, such as a telephone call, text, or WhatsApp message.
  • Reminders – We send friendly reminders of session details through the preferred communication method.
  • Flexibility - All groups are on a ‘drop in’ basis and non-attendance will not mean having to leave the group. It is understood that sometimes people withdraw for a period, but they are always welcome to return.

For further enquiries about the group please email Ian - ian.pepper@barca-leeds.org