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The Organization That Helped Me Realize One Letter Can Save a Life

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I am not one who typically stops and takes in sponsored ads on social media platforms. They are usually just nuisances that get in the way of me seeing the latest updates from friends and family. But one day as I was scrolling through Facebook, one particular ad caught my attention. The ad began like this:

“Do you like writing letters?

Would you like to provide hope and support to people all over the world battling mental illnesses like depression?

If so, our truly unique charity organization Letters Against Depression needs you!”

I was immediately drawn in. I love to write and personally struggle with mental illnesses and want to tackle the stigma behind it. So the thought of combining both my passions intrigued me. Of course, the only time I am actually interested in a Facebook ad my timeline refreshes and it is lost, much to my dismay. Luckily, a few days later a friend of mine liked the post and I was able to find out more about the organization.

The goal of Letters Against Depression is to provide a unique way to support those all over the world struggling from mental illnesses. Letters have become almost presents of sorts and the positivity-filled letters have the potential to save someone’s life.

The mission of the group is as follows:

“We have a simple, but robust mission: to help people [who have] depression and other mental illnesses. We do that by hand writing letters of support and inspiration, spreading the message ‘you are not alone’ and ‘you matter.’”

To become a part of this wonderful organization one simply visits and request a letter be sent to you or to send a letter to someone else (I did both). Then, you are assigned someone through an email. You do not send the letter directly to the subject because the organization reads through the letters to make sure they are appropriate and then they send them on their way. If the person receiving the letter so desires, they can respond and connect with the person who wrote it.

I have received a letter myself and to this day read it when I need a little pick-me-up. It has helped me through rough patches and has created a friendship that would have never existed otherwise. I highly encourage anyone who has 15 extra minutes a week to take advantage of this life-changing program. By sending a simple letter with some encouragement and positivity, you are holding the potential to save someone’s life and there is nothing more valuable than that.

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Thinkstock photo via AntonioGuillem.

Originally published: February 16, 2017
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