Faces of CMHA Durham: Amelia

From losing her mother when she was 15 years old and terrible experiences in the foster care system, Amelia has overcome serious adversity.  Now she lives independently in CMHA Durham housing and is on her way to finishing her social service worker program at college.

Education was always a priority for Amelia but her mental health issues were a barrier, “I used to have hallucinations and delusions in school, I’d feel my skin crawling, it was awful”  When she was 17 Amelia was connected with CMHA Durham, she started in the group housing program, got connected with a psychiatrist and received her mental health diagnosis.  ​Amelia has always been active in her recovery with CMHA Durham, and frequently takes part in programming offered by the various hub programs. Now she has her own subsidized apartment with CMHA and her marks at college have never been higher.  The pandemic has made school and life in general much more complicated, but despite changes to her program and  physical distancing from friends and family Amelia has persevered and expects to be on the honour roll for a second year in a row.  “Relapses in my mental health have always made moving forward difficult, but now I’m at a place where I feel strong and supported by my friends, my family and my care team, all that contributes to my grades.”  Amelia is a devout christian and she feels that her faith has been an important part of her recovery journey.  Next Year Amelia will continue her social service work program with a full course load and her eyes on her goal of being a social worker.  “I’ve proved to myself over and over again that I can do it and if I need help with my mental health I know what to do.”