Shattering the Silence of Stigma
HFTD Agents of Impact raise their voices for Proactive Prevention
Hope For The Day proactively prevents suicide through our outreach, education, and action initiatives. In 2018 we’ve been fortunate to partner with individuals who are committed to our proactive approach, many of whom have opened up about personal stories and shared much needed mental health resources with their communities. Together we are continuously breaking the silence of stigma and teaching others that It’s Ok Not To Be Ok. We can not make as great of an impact without these dedicated people raising their voices and showing others that there is hope for a better day.
Last month we re-launched our signature Agents of Impact (AOI) program, where our community of supporters signed onto being activists for our proactive approach to suicide prevention and mental health education. Each of these individuals is relaying their story on their Agents of Impact profile in an effort to shatter the silence of stigma. By publicly sharing their experiences they are giving recognition to unique mental health challenges in diverse communities, and showing others that they are not alone.
“I know how scary it can be when it feels like your thoughts are suffocating you to the point where you can't see the light at the end of the tunnel. I know how it feels to walk around with this darkness inside of you that seems to overpower any ounce of happiness you deserve. And I know how it is to feel like there is no way out. But I promise you, there is hope. For me, music was and still is my hope, my escape . . . As an Agent of Impact, I am committed to breaking the silence and helping people find their hope.”
“I want to do what I can to break the silence and dispel the stigma. I know what it feels like to be lonely and feel worthless at times but I also know the positive impact that I have on the world and the many people in it . . . If you take anything away from this, know that you are important, you are loved, and you matter so very much. Please take care of yourselves and each other. The world is a much better place with you in it.”
“My biggest problem was silence. I silently went through my days, feeling as if I was wasting away, not talking to anyone about how I was feeling because I felt that no one would care. This led to a continued state of feeling alone, which ultimately resulted in contemplating suicide . . . I know this may be uncomfortable for some to hear, but simply put, that's the issue with the stigma surrounding mental health today. It's viewed as a taboo subject that no one feels they can communicate with others about because others won't accept it and cast them out even further. So, overall my goal here is to break that stigma of mental health being a taboo subject and raise money to educate people on how to be there for people . . . ”
“I never tried to commit suicide but there were times when I thought about killing myself . . . With just opening up, talking, maybe even crying I felt some kind of release. Like a tiny bit of the weight on my shoulders was taken away. Time passed and my story went on . . . I want to help others that struggle like me. I want to show them that together we can fight everything, even our worst demons. And I want our society to open up to this theme . . . bad days/weeks and even breakdowns happen but I still go on. I am seeking help from a professional, my family and friends. I accepted that it's ok to not feel alright. It's not a shame to say ‘I need help, so please help me.’”
Thank you so much to our AOIs for raising your voices and sharing your connection to mental health. To read more AOI stories, please view all HFTD AOI profiles here.
Anyone can become a HFTD Agent of Impact.
As an AOI, you will join the growing network of leaders for outreach, education, and action, and have the opportunity to use the HFTD platform, tools, and resources to spread our mission of proactive suicide prevention. You will be equipped with opportunities to take action in your own digital and/or physical communities and share the “It’s Ok Not To Be Ok” motto. This also means raising money for outreach events, proactive prevention workshops, resource packs, and more.
Become an Agent of Impact today by launching your own campaign platform.
To effectively prevent suicide we need you to drive the conversation on mental health and break the silence of stigma. Your story matters. Please share it and help us maintain our outreach and education programs. Let’s carry proactive prevention into 2019. We Are In This Together.