Without breaking the cycle, trauma can permeates through families for generations.In a presentation at the Institute of Technology, Brave Faces Advocates, David Martinez and Mike Skondin, shared their stories of mental health recovery with students getting ready to enter the medical field. Both speakers reflected on how intergenerational trauma led to challenges with mental health and substance use.
Brave Faces Advocates, Aiden Mares and David Wharton, shared their true stories of mental health recovery at Shasta College’s educational series, “All Things [Not] Being Equal: Gender in the North State,” a discussion on the intersection of mental health and gender.
Brave Faces, Mike Skondin and David Martinez, shared their stories to Redding Police Department Police Officer Cadets and Records Technicians as part of a Mental Health Awareness training organized by Stand Against Stigma and Shasta County NAMI.
Sitting in a conference room at One SAFE Place, surrounded by men and women who work every day to help people escape from domestic abuse, Carrie Diamond and Kristen McChristian stand and told their stories.
To help people negotiate the process of deciding to disclose, Stand Against Stigma has offered a series of Becoming Brave trainings that have been attended by more than 40 local residents and have given them a greater sense of empowerment and control of their stories with mental health challenges. The trainings are funded by the Shasta County Mental Health Services Act.
The Brave Faces and Voices project began in 2012 as a way for Shasta County residents to reduce stigma and shame associated with mental illness and suicide by telling their inspiring stories of recovery. Nearly 30 people have bravely come forward to share their experiences with the goal of debunking pervasive misconceptions that prevent people from seeking help and support.
To promote healing and understanding as well as to save lives, here are the top realities about substance abuse the Brave Faces Advocates want you to understand.
My name is Rhonda Ramsey, and on December 28, 2008, I received a telephone call that no parent ever wants to receive. After two previous suicide attempts, and many years of battling bipolar disorder, my daughter Melissa lost her fight with the illness. Even though I knew bipolar disorder caused my daughter to have dramatic mood swings, and at times interfered with her ability to make good choices, nothing could have ever prepared me for losing my child to suicide.
When Neil Shaw was a young man, his older brother, a patrol deputy/corporal, suffered a heart attack while trying to quell an unruly mob at Laguna Seca Raceway. As he lay on the ground in need of medical attention, bystanders chanted “Die, pig, die.” Bobby Shaw, a father of two girls, passed away that day, and he hadn’t yet entered his 40s.
Poets, Rappers and Musicians Shatter the Bonds of Stigma with Inspiring Performances at Hope Is Alive! 2
Nearly 20 Shasta County poets, rappers and musicians performed at the Hope Is Alive! 2 Open Mic Night event May 9, 2015, shedding light on their struggles and sharing how creativity has helped them deal with hard times and promote understanding.