Digital Peer Support Programme terms and conditions
All Digital Peer Support sessions will be recruited and staffed by a members of the Youth Engagement and Participation Team within Teenage Cancer Trust. They will act as lead workers throughout and will be supported by additional Teenage Cancer Trust staff members in planning, delivering and evaluating the programme.
If you want to join our digital peer support sessions, you must meet the criteria of the programme or event you have signed up for.
Family/partners/friends aren’t permitted to actively attend the digital peer support sessions with young people. Whilst we appreciate it may be difficult at home to facilitate this, we would encourage young people to try to find time and space away from others when joining the session in order to get the best out of it.
To take part in the digital peer support sessions participants are required to download the Microsoft Teams application to their smartphone, tablet or computer – this is free of charge. Whilst this is a requirement of the sessions led by the Youth Engagement and Participation Team all use of the app outside of the planned sessions is the responsibility of the young people themselves.
On occasion where we will be using additional software, such as gaming sessions, you will still need to join and remain on the Microsoft Teams meeting. If you don’t join the Microsoft Teams meeting the lead worker will not invite you to join the wider session, and similarly if you leave the Microsoft Teams meeting throughout the session the lead worker will remove you from any additional platforms used during the session until you re-join.
Microsoft Teams is a secure application used by a range of professionals both within Teenage Cancer Trust and other national charities. All sessions will only be accessed by those with the above eligibility, who will have a private link to take part in each session. We ask that you do not share this link with anyone else. This will be provided by the lead worker upon having their place confirmed.
Although the sessions can only be accessed by eligible young people, once the session begins attendees will be able to see each other through the app. We recommend that anything sensitive or private is out of view during the session and ask that young people wear appropriate clothing. The responsibility for managing this is with the young people.
Young people will be placed into a group with the lead worker and any supporting staff from Teenage Cancer Trust, and other young people who will each in turn be able to see and interact with them.
Names and email addresses used when signing up to the group may be seen by other young people during the session.
The lead worker and supporting staff will be present throughout the whole of the activity and the group will only run at set times under their supervision. Only the lead worker can admit you to the Microsoft Teams meeting.
To comply with our risk assessment for the digital peer support sessions we require young people attending to join with their camera turned on and their face clearly visible. Although we do have a number of safeguarding processes place to ensure those attending are who they say they are, we do require staff to be able to monitor this throughout. If any young person joins without their faces being visible the staff will remind them that this needs to be addressed. If this isn’t resolved staff will then remove the young person until they are able to join adhering to these Terms and Conditions. Likewise, if this happens during the session where cameras are turned off either intentionally (without reason) or due to a fault the lead worker will address this and the same process will be followed in regards to removal from the session should it not be resolved.
On occasion young people may be asked to upload files to the group either through directly uploading to the Microsoft Teams app chat function or by emailing the support4you email address. These files will be relating to the session content, for example a finished arts and crafts piece – staff will ask that young people themselves aren’t in the photograph.
If young people choose to exchange personal details and stay in touch with each other this is a usual and positive consequence of running peer support opportunities. Lead worker to ensure this is done in a safe way and can offer assistance should participants wish to connect with each other.
All interaction outside of the sessions either through the Microsoft Teams app or any other forum is the responsibility of the young people and not Teenage Cancer Trust.
The project lead is a qualified and experienced youth worker with a varied history of working with young people in different settings and mediums, including online.
Throughout the recruitment and facilitating of digital peer support sessions the lead worker and any supporting staff are still ‘on duty’ and working to a planned schedule. All sessions will take place during set dates and times which participants will agree to beforehand. Professional responsibilities and approach of lead worker will remain the same as any work undertaken during usual in-person events.
The recruitment and invite process doesn’t support or allow contact through the Microsoft Teams app between young people and the lead worker outside of the sessions. If young people wish to contact the team this should be done through contacting us at [email protected]
In the rare event that a session will have to be cancelled, all young people will be informed and the link will then no longer be valid.
Each session will consist of a set activity and a brief guide to the content is listed in the registration form. It is up to young people to decide whether they are able to take part in the activity.
Any equipment/resources needed for the session will also be listed on the registration form, additional resources needed for sessions will be provided by Teenage Cancer Trust.
When signing up for activities which require additional resources to be posted out to you - you are agreeing to the Teenage Cancer Trust staff sharing your name and home address with the businesses/organisations they are being purchased through. This will be done in good time and using reliable companies.
As with in-person activities young people are free and encouraged to interact with each other during the online sessions. Peer Support can be a benefit to young people’s cancer experiences, especially during periods of isolation which diagnosis and treatment can cause. Talking about diagnosis and treatment is a normal part of the peer support group and will be monitored and facilitated by the lead worker. Any specific issues can be brought to the attention of the wider team (including Key Hospital Contact in the NHS) if appropriate and lead worker will check-in with young people regarding any issues they may have discussed if appropriate/needed.
All digital peer support sessions are a completely voluntary - there is no obligation for the young people to join the any of the sessions and participants are free to leave at any point. However, if this happens the lead worker will be in contact to check if everything is okay.
Inappropriate behaviour including but not limited to inappropriate language, bullying/abuse of any kind, discrimination, dangerous/risky behaviour will result in participants being appropriately challenged and depending on the severity their immediate removal from the session, emergency contacts or emergency services may also be called and informed if needed. In this instance the lead worker will then discuss the young person’s continued involvement in any further digital peer support sessions or programmes with the wider team and inform participant of this decision.
There may be times when we are concerned about you, your safety or welfare – We will always look to discuss this with you following the online session in a private forum, however if this is not possible, we may discuss our concerns with your clinical team and/or seek advice or support from external partners with a statutory responsibility to safeguard adults.
All digital peer support sessions are ‘dry’ and participants are therefore required to not consume alcohol throughout or be under the influence of alcohol when the session takes place. If lead worker or supporting staff suspect young people to be under the influence of alcohol or illegal substances, they will address this with them directly and remove them from the session if the concerns aren’t alleviated. The young person will be reminded of the terms and conditions and the lead worker will follow the same process as above in regard to their continued involvement in any future sessions.
As with any group work participants should be aware that whatever is discussed within the session, particularly involving personal experiences (whether cancer-related or otherwise) are for the benefit of the session and not to be shared outside of the group unless permitted by the young people themselves.
Online gaming sessions will always be run alongside a Microsoft Teams session, and only those who have joined and stay within the Microsoft Teams call will be added to the gaming session.
Any online gaming sessions will be appropriate for the age-range, be cross-platform, and private so no members of the public will be able to join, interact with or contact any of the participants in any way.
Use of any apps/games outside our sessions is the responsibility of the young person.
To ensure the sessions run as best as they can we recommend that all participants reset their Wifi router prior to the session taking place, to position themselves in a place to ensure a good signal, and if needed reduce other people using WiFi during the session. We would recommend that you test the signal and quality of connection prior to the session place, not when you join the session.
Please can you also ensure any apps you will be using are up to date and any hardware you will be using won’t have any updates scheduled during the session.
For any online gaming sessions, we will have a low-risk alternative group work session (such as quiz, icebreakers etc) planned in case game servers are down or being updated.
In light of the guidance offered - whilst we will be patient with young people who may be struggling to connect we cannot hold up the entire session should young people continue to be unable to join. In this case staff will continue the session but will offer guidance to young person such as resetting Wifi, reducing wider household’s use of WiFi, or asking if attendees are able to contact internet service providers, and then facilitating young people re-joining again should they manage to fix their connection.
If young people aren’t able to resolve connection issue, we will follow up with a check-in email.