Dialogue Sessions

Dialogue Sessions

If you have ever wondered what other students think about alcohol use, drug use, or technology use, attending a dialogue session might be right for you. These sessions are a chance to talk openly about substance use, with the intention of helping individuals find out what “balance” means to them. Through engagement in these conversations, students may find guidance and support in each other on their own journey to finding balance in substance use and their own limits.

What does a “session” look like?

Dialogue sessions occur on a weekly basis, focusing on alcohol, drugs, or technology. Although sessions are broadly focused on alcohol, drugs, or technology, they will be tailored to what the members of that session want to talk about within that category. Mentors will also be available after sessions for students who want to stay and chat! Get informed on when our next dialogue session is by following our VICE Facebook Page.

To get a better understanding of the structure of our group dialogue sessions, have a look at our community agreement:

Community Agreement for Group Dialogue Sessions

By participating in this session, you agree to. . .

  • Confidentiality: what’s said here, stays here; what’s learned here, leaves here.
    • Acknowledge that some participants may not want to connect outside of the session
    • Don’t “out” members if you see them in public; they may not want the acknowledge     Kaleidoscope in public
    • Facilitators may discuss the session in private afterwards, but identifying information will not leave Kaleidoscope unless there is a real and imminent threat of harm to self or others.
  • Speak from your own experience
  • Listen while others are speaking
  • Keep check-ins to a reasonable length
  • Late comers will be given a copy of the guidelines to read over and welcomed in once the speaker has stopped speaking.
  • Refrain from giving unsolicited Ask if it’s okay to comment or wait from them to prompt responses
  • Acknowledge that facilitators and group members are not trained professionals.
  • This is a safe space to talk about suicide and suicidal feelings; expect that a facilitator will follow-up with you afterwards if you do.
    • Additionally, please refrain from discussing methods or means, as these details can be extremely triggering.
    • If a facilitator is concerned or unsure about the degree of suicide risk presented by a participant, the facilitator will ask the student to either a) come with them to the SASC office to speak immediately with a professional, or b) call Mental Health Emergency Services (604 825 8289) in their presence to determine next steps. The facilitator can also call the hotline in the presence of the participant, if that is preferable to the student.
    • No mental health concern is off limits, but be mindful of the impact your words may have on others. Avoid sharing graphic details if they may be triggering to other participants. Try to find more general ways to talk about the experience, or describe the impact it had on you (i.e. omitting volumes, describing injection methods, names of people or bars, etc.).
  • Harassment, discrimination, or abuse will not be tolerated

Role of the facilitator

  • Facilitators are at meetings to contribute to discussion and ensure that group guidelines are followed
  • All facilitators have some relationship to or lived experience with substance use or dependence.
  • Facilitators are not trained professionals or experts beyond their own experience; they cannot give medical advice, and they remain neutral towards treatment modalities.
  • Facilitators can refer or connect you with community resources.
  • Vice facilitators will be available after session to connect participants with one-on-one support by request.

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