Wishing you wellness,
Wishing you wellness,
Since the first time I met Robyn at the Aleternatives Conference in 2015, I have been in awe of her sense of adventure and huge heart. Although she just turned 50, she has lived and worked in Australia, New Zealand, Canada and the United States, propogating the power of peer support around the world. Diagnosed with bipolar disorder, she has never let other people’s perceptions of what she can and cannot do deter her from living the life of her dreams. When asked what has helped her recover and thrive, she said, “the love and support of her global network of family and friends, her dog, and meaningful work.”
Robyn is the embodiment of the quote: “Hope sees the invisible, feels the intangible, and achieves the impossible.” Thank you Robyn for bringing hope and healing to people struggling with mental health issues around the world. You are a HOPEBRINGER!
On August 23, 2015, Bekah Miles sat in her chair, staring. Could she do it? Would she do it? No. Yes. She was so tired of hiding, tired of pretending, tired of her illness. But since that wasn’t going to change anytime soon, maybe it was time to change her approach. To take her life back, if she could. After ten minutes of debating, she did what millions do every minute – she clicked the “post” button. Then she walked away from Facebook, torn between chewing her fingernails down to stubs and shrugging her shoulders and insisting it was no big deal. Bekah’s Facebook post was only intended for family and friends, but within days it had reached millions, starting a national and international conversation about depression.
Mental health issues are a leading impediment to the health and wellbeing of high school and college students. Left untreated, mental illness – including anxiety, depression and eating disorders, can lead to school failure, family conflicts, substance abuse, violence, juvenile & criminal justice involvement, and even suicide. Sadly, suicide is the second leading cause of death among those 15-24 years old. More teenagers and young adults die from suicide than from cancer, heart disease, AIDS, birth defects, stroke, pneumonia, influenza and chronic lung disease combined. Treatment is effective. Yet, because of the shame and stigma surrounding these issues, mental health is not discussed and too many students are suffering in silence. Bekah wants to change that – She wants to share her story to dispel the stigma surrounding mental illness, and encourage fellow students to seek the help and support they need to recover and thrive.
I am delighted to share that Bekah recently joined ASHA International’s Speakers Bureau, and will be sharing her story with students at Century High School on March 17, 2016, and with students at her alma mater Canby High School on April 1, 2016.
Rebekah (Bekah) Miles is currently a student at George Fox University. She is working on a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology, with a minor in Women’s Studies, and is looking forward to graduating in the fall of 2016.
Key Topics: Depression, Advocacy, Stigma Reduction, Navigating the Health System, Advocating for Change.
If you’d like to book Bekah to speak at your high school or college, please contact Gayathri Ramprasad at email@example.com or 971 340 7190.
To promote personal, organizational, and community wellness through mental health education, training and support.
ASHA International is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization based in Portland, Oregon, U.S.A.
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