NPF Chapters & Support Groups
What is an NPF Chapter?
National Parkinson Foundation chapters are community organizations, comprised mostly of volunteer leaders, that provide local services, such as health and wellness programs for people with Parkinson’s disease and their families. NPF produces free educational materials for chapters to distribute to people in their communities and provides a toll-free helpline to assist chapters with information and referral. Chapters also conduct support groups, produce newsletters containing the latest in research and treatments and many raise awareness and funds through local fundraising events, such as walks, galas and golf tournaments.
Find your local chapter now.
Watch a video featuring Hattie Elam, a volunteer with Central Savannah River Area (CSRA) Parkinson Support Group, one of NPF's chapters:
What is an NPF Support Group?
A support group is a gathering of people whose lives are affected by Parkinson's disease who come together to seek information, voice their concerns and mutually share their experiences. The meetings provide an opportunity to discuss experiences and feelings and to share information and solutions to common problems.
For some people, the most difficult step is walking through the door, but most find that once they make the decision they find it to be helpful and supportive. A support group is not a substitute for medical treatment or professional counseling and it is not a replacement for family and friends.
Each support group is unique in its membership and style. The format and capabilities of each group vary greatly and may change over time. Groups usually meet once a month, but many groups meet twice a month or even weekly. Most groups are associated with a center or chapter, but many others are created and led by individuals, such as people living with Parkinson's, care partners or professionals from the local community.
People receive support from different types of groups, such as:
- Educational/informational groups that often have guest speakers Discussion groups where participants share their concerns, questions and receive support Exercise / relaxation groups for the person with Parkinson's and/or their caregiver. Some are general exercise groups while others offer specific modalities like tai-chi, yoga, meditation, etc.
Find a local support group now.
If you would like to learn more, download our Support Group Leaders Manual.
If you would like your Parkinson’s support group to be listed in our Helpline database, please call 1-800-4PD-INFO (1-800-473-4636), or email firstname.lastname@example.org.