Support for self help groups

If you would like support setting up or managing a group, please contact the COSHG team.

To visit our office in person (including access to our Archive Library), please get in touch to make an appointment in advance.


We maintain an extensive database of self help groups and aligned organisations. This allows us to connect groups with each other, individuals to groups and share information about specific areas of interest.

Please let us know of new groups to add to our database and any changes to contact details to keep the database as up-to-date as possible.

Workshops are held from time to time to enhance skills, increase networks and share information and experience between participants. Topics can include:

  • starting a group
  • funding
  • group dynamics and conflict resolution
  • publicity
  • legal issues
  • facilitation
  • surviving and thriving
  • and other issues to do with running successful groups.

Resources, publications and reports

COSHG has developed substantial in-house knowledge over our 40-year history on diverse issues relating to self help and support groups.

COSHG has produced ‘What is Self Help’, ‘In the Same Boat Resource Kit’ (currently being revised) and reports such as ‘Closing the Gaps’ Chronic Health & Illness Groups – Self Help and Peer Support Forum Report.

See our other publications and digital resources.

Archival Library

This includes material regarding self help groups from the mid ’70s onwards. Please note: Access to this collection requires an appointment and may incur a small fee. Due to the rarity of much of the library content, there is limited borrowing.

Poster collection

We also hold an interesting and eclectic collection of social justice campaigns and event posters dating from the 1980s and 1990s. In 2017 we were successful in gaining a Local History Grant through the Public Records Office Victoria (PROV), to conserve the collection.