Yesterday The Well was given a gift that prompted not only gratitude but a deep sense of sadness: 600 pairs of shoes, each representing a life lost to suicide in the Greater Dallas area in 2018. This is The Well Community’s sixth year to be the recipient of these shoes, which are donated for the Greater Dallas Suicide Prevention Coalition’s Suicide Awareness Day, and each year we receive them with heavy hearts. Continue reading
Most of the time, I’m a “looking forward” type of person. So it takes a bit of work for me to stop and look back. But every year we develop our annual report and that gives me a great reason to pause and remember.
We just released the 2018 Annual Report. Our theme is “Stigma-Free Zone” and we’ve included a couple of stories from our members who share how stigma has impacted them. We also tell about one of our volunteers, a retired police detective, who is helping our members rebuild the dignity that stigma has stolen. Continue reading
In the general population, one in 25 individuals experiences a serious mental health issue each year. At The Well, 25 in 25 experience the challenges of mental illness each day.
Severe mental health disorders have devastating effects on individuals and their families. Schizophrenia robs cognitive functions and communication abilities. Bipolar disorder wrecks havoc in its manic state and suppresses hope in its depressive state. All mental illnesses isolate and debilitate. Continue reading
June was a sad month in the world of entertainment. The tragic losses of Anthony Bourdain and Kate Spade left many wondering, again, how could people of such success, wealth and influence take their own lives? The media covered the events well, with compassion and education. They highlighted the difficult truths around depression and suicide in the United States such as:
- An estimated 16.2 million adults (6.7%) had at least one major depressive episode in 2016.1
- Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death.2
- On average 123 Americans take their lives each day.3
- Approximately 1.3 million adult males attempt suicide each year.4
I love this time of year. Not only do we get to enjoy the beauty of spring and the pleasure of moderate temperatures, we also have the fun of springtime traditions: egg dying and hunting, games and parties.
Spring also brings my favorite Christian holiday, Easter. There is so much hope in the Easter story. Easter reminds us that where God is there is life. If the dead can be raised then hope can be renewed, the sick can recover and the broken can be restored.
As you have gotten to know The Well Community, I hope you have learned how connected our members are to one another, to the staff, to our volunteers, donors and Board. We are so connected, in fact, that we could be the shining example of how to live out the Bible verse, “Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep.” (Romans 12:15) Continue reading
A number of years ago, Time Magazine’s “Person of the Year” was a mirror. The point was that, in the new age of iPhones and YouTube, the world was becoming more and more individualistic. They observed that we were increasingly able to tailor our inputs to only what we wanted and limit our world to whatever was of interest to us. And so, “I” was the Person of the Year.
If I were choosing The Well Community’s “Person of the Year” for 2017 I would hold up a window, because every time I look around me I see people who are not looking at themselves, but are instead looking outward—into the hearts of others. Continue reading