asha international mental health

We Give Hope

July is #BIPOCMentalHealthMonth.

Systemic oppression has significant impact on the mental health and well-being of Black, Indigenous, People Of Color (BIPOC). Historical and contemporary injustices continue to perpetuate trauma through generations and into today. BIPOC communities are resilient and have worked hard to uplift their communities despite systemic barriers and the impact of trauma. All of us at ASHA International celebrate their resilience. And, during the month of July, we will be sharing stories to honor their journey. See Olympic Gold Medalist Chamique’s story below and join us on Facebook, Instagram and YouTube to see more inspiring stories. Click here to learn more about the impact of trauma and access lists of resources specifically for BIPOC and LGBTQ+ communities provided by our friends at Mental Health America. Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame hooper and Olympic gold medal winner Chamique Holdsclaw has dedicated her life to end the stigma of mental illness and be a voice for those who feel marginalized and voiceless. Watch Chamique’s inspiring...
The Healing Power of Vulnerability

The Healing Power of Vulnerability

Adam knew he was gay from a very young age, but it took him over a decade and a half to admit it to both himself and those around him. He went through multiple episodes of depression, without realizing it was because he refused to accept essential parts of himself and share them with his friends and family. Once he learned how to become vulnerable, he realized how powerful it can be to operate from a place of radical vulnerability and not listen to shame. Compared to people who identify as straight, LGBTQ individuals are 3 times more likely to experience a mental health condition. And LGBTQ youth are 4 times more likely to attempt suicide, experience suicidal thoughts, and engage in self-harm, as compared to youths that are straight. Watch Adam’s inspiring story. about his journey to well-being. And, share it with your family and friends....

Let’s Celebrate the Class of 2020!

Over the last few years, we have had the privilege of mentoring youth storytellers Hanna Kane, Jaxon Buell, Hoda AbouEich & Eric Martz. Their stories have inspired and empowered thousands of youth and adults to take charge of their mental health and well-being. Their courage, resilience and activism will lead us into a better world of equity & inclusion. Please join us in congratulating the class of 2020, and wishing them the very best.  Hanna Kane   This fall I will be attending the Honors College at University of Washington with a plan to study constitutional law and American history. My goal is to become an attorney practicing constitutional law with a focus on social justice and big data. In college I am looking forward to connecting with the queer community, taking as varied classes as I can, and perhaps studying abroad in Ireland.    Becoming an ASHA storyteller has allowed me to reclaim control of my story, sharing my struggles to empower others and myself in the process. It has taught me the power of both a single story and a community coming together to support healing and growth. I will always be a storyteller at heart, and I am incredibly grateful for the opportunities I’ve had with the organization.  Jaxon Buell   This fall I will be a private in the Marine Corps with a M.O.S. of intelligence. My goal is to become a data analyst for one of the US intelligence agencies. During my time in the Marine Corps, I look forward to making new and lifelong friends and comrades, as well as being able to...
Finding silver lining during quarantine

Finding silver lining during quarantine

I’ve lost track of how many weeks it has been in this quarantine. I’ve lost track of the day and date more than a few times. I have been isolated in my house, with my dog, 24/7. We are in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic. Oregon did not get hit the hardest, thanks to early physical distancing. But our confirmed cases and the death toll are still rising. Society is being tested to the extreme. How are we going to survive collectively? What will life look like after the pandemic? Before we can answer those questions, there’s a more pressing one: how are we going to survive together, individually? In order to give that question some thought, I want to share my mental health journey when I was challenged by USCIS (U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services) almost exactly a year ago, as I’m noticing many parallels between the two experiences.  I was facing the danger of deportation. During that time, my mind was in a constant fight-or-flight state. I was hypervigilant, anxious, scared, and traumatized. I constantly felt alone, isolated, disconnected, and unseen. Even my closest people could not understand my pain. I was screaming inside, silently, and no one could hear me. But I avoided talking about it. I felt ashamed and exhausted. However, I was fortunate enough to find mental health professionals to help with my anxiety and PTSD. Does that sound familiar? In quarantine, how many of us constantly feel not only physically, but also spiritually or mentally isolated from other people, even people who are close to us? How many of us have tried...
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