It Takes A Village: Creating Perinatal Mental Health Support Groups

Support groups are an effective way to facilitate connection and community among those who may be struggling with perinatal mood and anxiety disorders (PMADs). Combating isolation is an important key to promoting mental health for pregnant and postpartum individuals. Furthermore, support groups may be structured in a variety of ways to serve the unique needs of individuals at various points along the perinatal journey.

In this 2-hour course, perinatal psychotherapists and group facilitators, Gabrielle Kaufman, MA, LPCC, NCC, BC-DMT, PMH-C and Anna King, LCSW, PMH-C, will cover the benefits of facilitating a support group for both provider and client. They will provide specialized tips for serving the perinatal community covering the who, what, when, where, why, and how of starting a support group including a list of suggested group topics.

You will also hear tips and reflections from other perinatal therapists including Smadar Garritson, LCSW, CLE, Robyn Park, MA, LMFT, and Melanie Weiner, LMFT.

Finally, you will hear testimonials from support group participants who will share what was most helpful to them about joining the group during their transition to parenthood.

This course is beneficial to anyone providing healthcare during the perinatal period who seeks to increase their knowledge of how to support pregnant, postpartum, and lactating individuals in a support group setting including doctors, midwives, therapists, peer support specialists, and more.


After completion of this course learners will be able to:

1. Define what a support group is and identify what its most common benefits are for providers and parents.
2. Identify 2 of the most common barriers to support group access.
3. Discuss the importance of storytelling within the group setting and its potential for social skill-building.
4. Discuss how to address the limits of confidentiality in a group and uphold ethical boundaries with and between support group members.
5. Facilitate the co-creation of an effective community agreement with support group participants to establish group cohesion and a safe, brave space.
6. Explain the importance of culturally sensitive services and identify 2 ways to create inclusive and culturally sensitive material and environments.


Community Partners FBO Maternal Mental Health NOW is approved by the American Psychological Association (APA) to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. Community Partners FBO Maternal Mental Health NOW maintains responsibility for this program and its content. This course meets criteria for 2 continuing education credits for LMFTs, LPCCs, LCSWs, LEPs, and psychologists through the Board of Behavioral Sciences (BBS) in the state of CA. If you hold a license not listed here or are licensed outside of the state of California, please check with your licensing board directly to confirm that these CE credits will be accepted. We are unable to assist in verifying if CE credits will be approved for your license type/state outside of California.


This activity has been planned and implemented in accordance with the essential areas and policies of the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education through the joint providership of Cedars-Sinai Medical Center and Maternal Mental Health NOW. Cedars-Sinai Medical Center is accredited by the ACCME to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

The Cedars-Sinai Medical Center designates this enduring material for a maximum of 2 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

The California State Board of Registered Nursing accepts courses approved by the ACCME for Category 1 credit as meeting the educational requirements for license renewal.
  • Section 1
  • Module 1: Introduction to forming perinatal support groups
  • Support Groups and Services: Intro
  • Support groups and services with Melanie and Smadar
  • Group participant #1 share: Intro
  • Group Participant #1 Share: Intro
  • Section 2
  • Module 2: The importance of storytelling
  • Benefits of Group: Intro
  • Benefits of Group w/ Robyn, Smadar, and Melanie
  • Group participant #1 share: Benefits
  • Group Participant #1 Share: Benefits of Group
  • Section 3
  • Module 3: The what, why, and where of support groups
  • Group Participant #2 Share: Intro
  • Benefits of attending a group from a group participant #2
  • Section 4
  • Module 4: When is a group offered and who do we invite?
  • Group Participant Share #3: Intro
  • Benefits of attending a group from a group participant #3
  • Section 5
  • Module 5: Confidentiality and informed consent
  • Challenges of group and tips for handling them: Intro
  • Challenges of group & tips for handling them with Melanie Weiner
  • Group participant # 1 share: Challenges of being pregnant or a new parent
  • Group Participant #1 Share: Challenges
  • Section 6
  • Module 6: What topics could be covered in a support group?
  • Success Stories: Intro
  • Success stories with Melanie and Smadar
  • Group participant #1 share: Topics
  • Group Participant #1 Share: Topics Covered
  • Section 7
  • Module 7: Trauma-informed care and cultural humility
  • Section 8
  • Module 8: Take home points
  • Group participant #1 share: What do you wish could be different?
  • Group participant #1 share: What do you wish could be different?
  • Section 9
  • Learning Assessment
  • Survey Evaluation
Completion rules
  • All units must be completed