I found myself homeless around June of 2007. I went to Newark Emergency Services and they referred me to a shelter called Real Families. That became my residence for more then a year. During my stay in Real Families, I was referred to Project Live Inc from my Welfare case worker. She thought I would benefit from their services due to my mental illness and my need for residency. I met with Debbie Underwood of the PATH program and she had me fill out all the necessary paperwork. She also let me know that they were in the process of building a new apartment building and that I was eligible for that building.
In October of 2008 I moved into the SRO, and the rest is history, or I would say “my story”. During the past three years I’ve attended UBHC program and graduated from their partial care program. I am currently attending their outpatient program. I also finished the Peer Advocate Program through the Mental Health Association. I am not currently a peer counselor, but I do plan on using my new skills in the future. With the help of case workers and support staff, I was able to acquire a safe place for my daughter to visit, which later helped me to get back partial custody of my child. Without my own place it would have made it more difficult to establish a closer bond with my daughter. Together we are now continuing to grow and getting to know each other, as mother and child.
During my many years with Project Live I have attended events held by Project Live such as the Wellness Conference, health fairs, community meetings, social/family events and educational workshops, which I have benefited from greatly. At Project Live we are all family, consisting of consumers and case workers working towards a common goal, which is to educate, advocate, and support the mental health consumer to help them with their recovery.