Community Counseling Center Foundation holds kick off to Mental Health Awareness Month

CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. (KBSI) – The Community Counseling Center Foundation kicked off Mental Health Awareness Month at the gazebo in downtown Cape Girardeau Sunday evening.

State Representative John Voss presented a resolution from the Missouri House that he co-authored with Rep. Barry Hovis of District 146. Rep. Voss also presented a resolution from Sen. Holly Rehder.

“It’s ok to not by ok,” said Community Counseling Center CEO Wendy Ice. “We’re here for you. We all just need to make sure that we stay aware and be willing to talk about it and understand that we’re here to support one another.”

One woman who batters PTSD uses CCCF’s services spoke about how mental health awareness is important and how recovery is possible.

“When I openly discuss my mental health with someone, I am making it natural and breaking the stigma that comes with mental health. The road to recovery is highly personal and it looks different from person,” she said. “With awareness, we can make it just as we do our physical health. By raising awareness we break stereotypes, stigma, barriers and the isolation of asking, ‘Why me?'”

“The road to recovory could include clinical treatment, peer services, medication or other approaches. For me, my road involved a lot of support from different areas. When my PTSD spiked, my road to recovery involved acknowledgment that I wasn’t ok. I got support from some of my family. I sought out counseling to process what I had gone through and talked with my provider about the symptoms that I was experiencing. I also leaned pretty heavy on my team at work and my husband who also has PTSD. My co-workers and peer services helped me through in so many ways. It was the normacly of talking about my mental health and no judgment being passed because somewhere somehow they had been there on their own journey. Giving me hope and building on my resiliency that was temporarily hidden. Recovery is possible. Symptoms can be managed. Let’s raise awareness not for one day or for one month but daily.”

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