Justone Mental Health Support Service - Volunteers' Sharing of Experience (by Eliza)

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The past half year's voluntary work in "JUSTONE" has given me an opportunity to realize the world of people in recovery, which has eventually awakened me up from the commercial sector. Emotional distress is just around the corner and anyone might suffer regardless of age, sex, education level, or industry one is working in. Some service users I have helped were in fact professional and well-educated people. This made me realize that emotional distress is not restricted to particular batch or group of people.

Despite the limited time in communicating with service users over the phone, I have perceived various difficulties they are face in daily life. These difficulties include emotional disturbance, misunderstanding from their family and the community, lack of social activities, low motivation, doubt of their own value to live, etc. It is valuable to know that service users’ stress in both spiritual and emotional sense could be slightly relieved from the short telephone conversation, and meantime they felt care and support from the community. Recalling an episode with a female service user, she felt depressed and frustrated in preparing birthday gift for her husband. At the beginning of the conversation, she has repeatedly blamed herself and even denied her self-value. Upon attentive listening and encouragement, she has become lighthearted, and eventually decided to make chocolate by herself as a birthday gift for her husband. The counselling process has enlightened her and she even asked for the recipe for making chocolate.

Indeed, these short conversations not only can help people in recovery, but also enrich the wealth of my soul, and make me treasure what I have already possessed: health, family, friends, etc.