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My life of 40 plus years had been full of ups and downs with each down being worse than the last. I had been hospitalised on psych wards on two occasions and after the last found myself homeless and couch surfing and extremely unwell. Life had become unbearable, day in day out with severe Depression and Anxiety. In the past these bad times had passed over the course of a few months with high doses of antidepressants, rest and a home where my sense of well-being could return. I found myself in a place where Recovery was just not possible, and was terrified of finding my own place to live even though I had the money to so – I was just too unwell.

Thanks to the mental health community in Bunbury and in particular my Case Manager from Bunbury Mental Health, I found myself with a home with the amazing supportive, nurturing and kind people at the Richmond Fellowship community supported units in Bunbury. After experiencing severe and debilitating anxiety for nearly five months straight …. My anxiety gradually eased over a few weeks and I had a wonderful sense of well-being again!

Richmond then helped me start my own personal Recovery program to better live with my mental health challenges once and for all! This included therapy for dealing with problems I’d not properly dealt with all my life, as well as learning what the healthiest lifestyle was for me to stay well. After about 12 months I started to make steps towards one of my long term goals of getting back into the workforce as I hadn’t worked for 10 years due to my mental health issues. I enrolled in TAFE and worked in two volunteer jobs and have now landed my dream job of Mental Health Support Worker. Now I can give back to the mental health community who have done so much for me. I’ve also found my dream home and am in a relationship. Life has never been better!

I will never forget my “family” at Richmond and will always drop in to say hi when I travel to Bunbury. I also made some lifelong friends with some of the other residents at Richmond who have also made independent lives for themselves in the community.

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