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Voices of Hope for Mental Illness: Not Against, with (Paperback)

Voices of Hope for Mental Illness: Not Against, with Cover Image
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We hear about inadequate mental health care. We ask questions regarding a link between mental illness and violence. We do NOT hear as much about the stigma of mental illness that complicates one's ability to cope with a diagnosis that becomes a label, resulting in "self-stigma,"discouraging individuals from seeking and/or complying with treatment. Too often community members only "experience" mental illness through dramatic or dire media stories that fail to inform us about the real world of mental illness. Thus, stigma feeds, and is fed by, myths and misunderstandings leading to a community sense of hopelessness and fear of mental illness. In contrast, Geel, a stigma-free community in Belgium, has a centuries' old history of accepting those with mental illness - even as boarders in their own homes. Geel acknowledges the human needs of those with mental illness and responds to those needs by providing social opportunities and meaningful work, within the community While the U.S. does not have the same history as Geel, we do have programs that offer a fostering environment, offering hope for those with a diagnosis of mental illness as well as for the communities in which they live. In a language and style that can be understood by anyone and everyone, the author shares what she's learned and experienced regarding tolerance and inclusion - in Geel and in our own country - offering individuals and communities an opportunity to hear the encouraging "voices of hope for mental illness." When the general population is freed of myths and misunderstandings regarding mental illness, we can focus on mental health fostered by community care that thrives in "caring communities.

About the Author

For 24 years (1991-2015) Jackie Goldstein, was a psychology professor at Samford University in Birmingham, AL. For many more years she has been aware of the public stigma of mental illness which can lead to "self-stigma" and a potential failure to seek or comply with treatment. In 1982 she first learned of Geel, Belgium, a stigma-free community with a centuries old tradition of foster family care for the mentally ill, where citizens acknowledge the human needs of those with a diagnosis of mental illness, offering them opportunities for social interaction and meaningful work. Dr.Goldstein has visited Geel seven times; in addition she has identified and visited fifteen mental health programs in the United States that, in a variety of ways, offer a similar environment of encouraging tolerance. With these visits, she has come to understand that a significant source of hope for the mentally ill is the metaphorical "voice" of acceptance that a stigma free community offers.
Product Details
ISBN: 9781517662950
ISBN-10: 1517662958
Publisher: Createspace Independent Publishing Platform
Publication Date: February 3rd, 2016
Pages: 260
Language: English