Jaci came to Project Helping early in our existence but after having lived with depression for some time and dealing with it pretty much on her own. Anyone who has struggled knows that one of the hardest parts of depression is the isolation and the fear of potential stigma. Realistically, not talking about your depression is maybe one of the hardest parts of living with depression.
When Jaci first found Project Helping, she was drawn to the mission because she had found herself looking for a way to get involved in volunteer activities. She could recall volunteering in the past and the benefits is had for her, but had naturally moved away from giving a lot of time as life got busy; as it tends to do.
Jaci first volunteered with Project Helping late in 2014 at a volunteer project hosted at the Baby Haven, a child care center for children whose mothers are seeking treatment for substance abuse and addiction. Needless to say, helping at a place such as this is an impactful thing to do.
Immediately, Jaci could feel the impact of what she was doing and the benefit that the volunteer act had on her own mental health and mental wellness. Not only does volunteering have amazing benefits for your mental health, but being around others, being a part of a community, is incredibly beneficial.
At Project Helping, that is what we do. We use the act of volunteering to improve mental wellness. We focus on organizing and leading volunteer opportunities that are impactful, social and ridiculously easy to sign up for.
Everyone struggles from time to time with their mental health and mental wellness. If you are struggling with something, of you’ve been dealing with depression for a while, get involved and find out how amazing volunteering can be for you own health.
In the mean time, draw strength and inspiration from Jaci’s story. The courage that it takes to be open, honest and vulnerable with your story takes time, but the act of talking about what you are dealing with is not only good for you, but it can inspire others to do the same.