What is iPeer2Peer?
The Arthritis Foundation is piloting a new peer mentorship program called iPeer2Peer. The goal of this program is to help and support teens with juvenile arthritis (JA) and related childhood rheumatic diseases. The iPeer2Peer Program was developed by the iOUCH (improving Outcomes in Child Health through Technology) research team at the Hospital for Sick Children in Ontario, Canada to help teens with chronic disease better manage their condition.
Check out this video about iPeer2Peer: http://tiny.cc/iPeer2Peer
How does the iPeer2Peer Program Work?
The Arthritis Foundation iPeer2Peer Program will match teens with a young adult mentor who has learned to manage their disease. Teens and their mentors will speak via video calls that last approximately 20-30 minutes and will connect at least 6 times over the course of three months.
The iPeer2Peer Program is new and different because it relies on technology that virtually connects teens and young adults from around the country, making education and support more accessible to young people with chronic disease.
Who are the iPeer2Peer mentors?
Young adults, ages 18-25 with juvenile arthritis or related rheumatic diseases, are trained to serve as iPeer2Peer mentors. These young adult volunteers have a proven track record in their own disease management and in their ability to serve as a positive role model for teens needing additional help and support.
Young Adults: To find out more about being an iPeer2Peer Mentor, please contact Jennifer Ziegler at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 404-965-7727.
Where can I sign-up for iPeer2Peer?
To be considered for the iPeer2Peer Program, both teen and parent must:
- Complete the survey applications, links above
- Review and sign the iPeer2Peer Waiver & Expectation Packet (emailed once the survey applications are complete)
*Completed Physician Form needed for all Teens and Young Adults wanting to join iPeer2Peer.
“Thank you for the iPeer2Peer program! This has been such a difficult time for my son and he was just so happy to talk to his Peer Mentor the other night! He was so hesitant about the experience and very unsure, but the initial conversation apparently went very well, he got off the phone so excited! It is so nice to have someone that understands him and he can chat with about his issues and daily experiences learning to living with his JA.
I just can’t express my appreciation for allowing us to be a part of this experience. I hope the iPeer2Peer program is a success and other kids have the same opportunity!”
-Ella, JA Parent