Family Support Groups (FSG)

Family Support Groups are offered virtually and in-person across BC. Contact a local BCSS educator or visit our events calendar to find one near you.

support group calendar

Find your local Family Support Group

BCSS provides support groups for family and friends of people living with schizophrenia, psychosis, or another severe and persistent mental illness throughout BC.

BCSS Family Support Groups offer a safe and supportive environment for family and friends to share, ask questions, and connect with others who are also supporting a loved one with schizophrenia. Family Support Groups are led by trained facilitators and educators who provide support and resources to caregivers, family, and friends of people living with schizophrenia, psychosis, or another severe and persistent mental illnesses.


BCSS Principles of Support

  • We will see the individual first, not the illness.
  • We recognize mental illnesses are brain disorders.
  • We aim for better coping skills.
  • We find strength in sharing experiences.
  • We reject stigma in ourselves and others.
  • We won’t judge anyone’s pain as less than our own.
  • We forgive ourselves and reject guilt.
  • We accept we cannot resolve all problems.
  • Frequently asked questions

    • Severe and persistent mental illness (SPMI) is a term used to describe a category of mental disorders that are characterized by their seriousness and long-lasting nature. SPMIs typically significantly impact a person’s ability to function in daily life. These conditions often require ongoing treatment and support.

    • Family Support Groups are for people in BC who have a family member or close friend with a severe and persistent mental illness.

    • The Family Support Group program was developed for an adult audience. If you or your loved one is underage, please visit the BCSS Youth website. BCSS Youth provides programs and resources for children and youth, including drop-in support groups.

    • BCSS is proud to offer a variety of programs and services, including:

      • Family Support Groups
      • Strengthening Families Together programs
      • Partnership Education Presentations
      • BCSS Youth
      • One-on-one support
      • Educational events and webinars

    • BCSS also has a podcast called Look Again: Mental Illness Re-examined that shares information about severe and persistent mental illness. The podcast has guests from a range of backgrounds, including medical professionals, researchers, family members, people living with mental illness, and more.