The idea for 320 was born out of my personal experience and the recognition that we can do better to address the needs of those who are suffering with mental health concerns and addiction. For 13 years I watched my husband Chester struggle with depression and substance use. I often felt scared and alone. I was uneducated about the challenges he faced and I wanted information – but finding answers to my questions and available help for our family was very difficult.
After my husband lost his battle with depression and addiction, I knew I had to make a change to the mental health landscape. I began speaking to as many mental health groups as I could find. Whitney Showler and Music For Relief have been very supportive and helpful on this journey.
So here is what I learned. We don’t need to create more programs – there are good ones out there. But we do need to do two things. We need to streamline access to the help that IS available. And we need to change the culture of mental health so that those in need – and their family members – are able to speak openly about their struggles so that they can seek the care they deserve.
I am proud to join Give an Hour, the lead organization for the Campaign to Change Direction, and the Campaign’s 500+ organizations working to drive culture change. And together with Give an Hour and other partners, we will build a new approach to ensure that those in need can easily find help – when they need it.
Most important to me is that we will build a resource – 320 – for friends and family members who are seeking answers to questions about mental health, mental illness and addiction – so that they can support the people in their lives who are suffering emotionally.
Stay tuned – and thank you for supporting our vision.
Join us and together we will #ChangeMentalHealth!
Visit the page here.