What is OZO

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OZO is a self-help tool enabling you to organize structured online chat sessions for multiple participants who can choose to remain anonymous:

  • The chat sessions are moderated by a moderator.
  • The chat sessions last up to an hour.
  • The chat sessions are organised once a week on the same day and at the same time.
  • Every chat session has a different topic.
  • The anonymity of the participants is guaranteed by technology (peer-to-peer encryption) and by the registration process (anyone in possession of a unique code name can enter the chat room).

The tool consists of a chat environment and a set of instructions and documents:

OZO serves individuals:

  • Who face a challenge or an opportunity to which they have no clear answer yet. But they do have a name for the challenge or opportunity.
  • Who want to talk to people with the same challenge or opportunity, both to support and be supported.
  • Who do not know where to find reliable information.
  • Who want to communicate anonymously in a safe, privacy-friendly environment.
  • Who want to communicate in a way that is not steered by institutions but by the participants themselves.
  • Who do not want to ask a professional for help (yet).

But also for people who want to organize nonhierarchic intervision sessions.

What’s in it for the moderator:

  • The moderator builds up a special status within a group of participants who are close to them either in real life or because of the specific challenge or opportunity.
  • The moderator gets to select chat topics from among participant-generated topics or, in case no participant-generated topics are available, gets to decide the chat topic.
  • The moderator gets to present introductions on the chat topics.
  • The moderator reads what’s happening with the participants.

What is expected of the moderator:

  • The moderator’s goal is to let participants feel safe: the moderator sets boundaries on criticism, off-topic comments, and follow-up questions while forbidding participants to reveal co-participant identities and attacks on co-participants.
  • The moderator’s main task is to serve the expression of the participants. The moderator does not present their opinions or knowledge except for during their introduction.
  • The moderator decides the rhythm of the chats.
  • The moderator prepares introductions to every chat.
  • After every five to ten chat sessions, the moderator organizes an evaluation session in which participants reflect on their progress.

What’s in it for participants:

  • Participants will experience a change for the better.
  • Participants will learn how other individuals in similar situations deal with the same challenge or opportunity.
  • Participants are heard in a safe environment: without fear of criticism or too much questions.
  • Participants will learn to find their own voice.
  • Participants do not have to be consistent, they can try out different aspects of their identity.
  • Participants are stimulated to engage in self-reflection while surrounded by good will.
  • Participants will experience quality time for an hour per week.
  • Trust, empathy, and good manners between participants will grow.

What is expected from participants:

  • Participants are expected to have their own internal motivation.
  • Participants are to be open to differences and show good will.
  • Participants are to be willing to focus on one topic for an hour per session and flow with the chat. They are to be prepared not to multitask at that time, even when awkward silences occur.

What makes OZO different?

  • The communication is structured but not hierarchic. No one is labeled “client” or “patient”.
  • The communication is limited to one hour per week and not scattered in time.
  • Participants can remain anonymous.
  • No data are stored and no profiling occurs. Sensitive information is shared between participants and the moderator only. There is no commercial system that might sell information.
  • The participants’ progress is regularly monitored in a familiar and safe environment.

PLEASE let us know how OZO works for you. We gladly learn from you.
erasmus-co-funded

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