ASHA Interantional turns 10!

Happy World Mental Health Day!

10th-anniversary-2Ten years ago, I started ASHA International with a simple wish – to share the lessons I had learned in pain to give hope to at least one person struggling with a mental health issue. Thanks to your love and support, over the years my colleagues and I have had the privilege of reaching out and touching the lives of more than 45,000 people nationally and internationally with a resounding message of  hope and healing.

According to the World Health Organization, mental health issues impose an enormous disease burden on societies across the world. Between 1990 and 2013, the number of people suffering from depression and/or anxiety increased by nearly 50%, from 416 million to 615 million. Despite its enormous health, social and economic burden, mental disorders continue to be driven into the shadows by stigma, prejudice and fear.

At ASHA International, we are dedicated to bringing mental health issues out of the shadows and into the light. We are also dedicated to destigmatizing mental health issues and empowering people to find the treatment and support they need to recover and thrive.

Please give the Gift of Hope today, and partner with us as we embark on another exciting decade dedicated to promoting mental health and wellness at home, at school, at work, and in the community. Together, we can change lives, perhaps even save lives.

Namaste,

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Founder & President, ASHA International

The You Can Recover Project

Aida and Gayu

I was born and raised in India amidst ancient traditions and a large loving extended family of twenty –three – grandparents, uncles, aunts and cousins. My happy childhoo, however, gave way to a traumatic adolescence. By the time I was 18, I was debilitated by generalized anxiety disorder and panic attacks. At 23, as a young mother in America, I struggled to free myself from the death-hold of depression. Over the years, my life became a blur of doctor visits, medications, hospitalizations, ECTs, and failed suicide attempts. Like millions of people struggling with mental illness around the world, I eventually gave up hope for recovery. I felt alone, afraid and ashamed.

But, in April 1989, a stranger came to visit me in the most unlikely of places, a psychiatric ward, and gave me the gift of HOPE that changed my life forever. Her name was Aida. In the short time we spent together, Aida held me in her arms and shared her struggles with depression, and her relentless pursuit of recovery. Although Aida’s visit was short, she gave me the gift of HOPE that has sustained me for a lifetime.

On October 10th, in celebration of World Mental health, my nonprofit organization, ASHA International, launched the You Can Recover Project. 

YCRP logo - JPEGThe You Can Recover Project’s mission is to give HOPE to people struggling with mental health issues around the world, and inspire them with personal insights on how to recover and rebuild a healthy, meaningful, productive life.

I sincerely hope that the stories shared in the You Can Recover Project will give HOPE to people struggling with mental health issues around the world, and let them know they can recover, just as Aida’s story inspired me to recover and rebuild a healthy, meaningful, productive life.

To learn more about the You Can Recover Project and share your recovery story, please click here…

The stories featured in the project is evidence to the fact that while mental illness has no barriers, hope and healing have no boundaries.

The post The You Can Recover Project appeared first on Shadows in the Sun by Gayathri Ramprasad.

Living Proof: Telling Your Story to Make a Difference

I am delighted to share that I am featured in a powerful, must-read book for advocates around the world, no matter our cause. Read it and share it with the advocates in your life. Thank you!

If you are tLiving Proof Book Coverelling your story:

  • To change minds
  • To raise Awareness
  • To touch hearts
  • To influence policy
  • To save lives
  • To make a difference

Living Proof is your guide.

The post Living Proof: Telling Your Story to Make a Difference appeared first on Shadows in the Sun by Gayathri Ramprasad.

Be the Hope

Happy Mental Health Awareness Month!

In April 1989, a stranger came to visit me in the most unlikely of places, a psychiatric ward and gave me the gift of hope that changed my life forever, and continues to transform the lives of thousands of people around the world. Although her visit was short, she taught me that a random act of kindness can give hope and change a life forever. For years, I have wanted to share her story with the world. And, on May 2nd, I finally had the opportunity to do so at TEDx MtHood. Hope my TED talk inspires you to BE THE HOPE, change a life, and heal the world, one person at a time.

Please share my TED talk with your family, friends, and colleagues and encourage them to BE THE HOPE. Thank you!

The post Be the Hope appeared first on Shadows in the Sun by Gayathri Ramprasad.

Manovikas Prakashan publishes Marathi translation of Shadows in the Sun

Thane Book Launch

My deepest gratitude to Manovikas Prakashan and Dr. Anand Nadkarni at the Institute of Psychological Health for translated my memoir, Shadows in the Sun: Healing from Depression and Finding the Light Within into Marathi. I sincerely pray that we can reach Marathi readers across India with a message of hope and healing.

Thanks also to the Institute of Psychological Health, Dr. Anand Nadkarni and Dr. Anuradha Sovani for facilitating a memorable book launch and discussion in Thane, India, on December 19th. Most of all, thanks to the many people who attended the event and engaged in a lively discussion about mental health and wellness.

The post Manovikas Prakashan publishes Marathi translation of Shadows in the Sun appeared first on Shadows in the Sun by Gayathri Ramprasad.