A core value of Appleseed Community Mental Health Center is to provide person centered holistic recovery options for individuals whose life events contribute to depression, anxiety and other experiences such as hearing voices or seeing things others may not see. Through the funding of the Ashland County Mental Health and Recovery Board, Appleseed is able to offer Ashland County a unique support group approach for those who consider themselves voice hearers. The approach starts with the principle that hearing voices in not a symptom of a psychiatric disorder but rather is a sign or symbol of one’s mind trying to make sense of adverse childhood experiences, victimization, or other life events. The group is led by a trained group facilitator and focuses on finding meaning in the voices rather than simply trying to silence them. The model for this support group comes from the Voice Hearers Network which first formed in 1988 in Manchester England. In 2010 the model has spread to the United States. The goals of the Hearing Voices Network USA (HVN) are,
- Raising awareness about voice hearing, visions and other unusual or extreme experiences
- Supporting anyone who has had these experiences by providing opportunities to talk about them freely and without judgment amongst peers
- Supporting anyone who has had these experiences to explore, understand, learn and grow from them in their own way
- Supporting individuals providing treatment, family, friends and the general community to broaden their understanding and ability to support individuals who have had these experiences.(From Hearing Voices Network USA)
From a participant,
The Hearing Voices Movement in the USA is spreading across our nation where individuals with shared life experiences are coming together in solidarity to share and support one another. These life experiences are Hearing Voices, having Visions, or any other life experiences that most others do not have. Rather than being viewed clinically as “psychotic “, “delusional” or “schizophrenic,” we view our experiences that are common or natural to ourselves. It is our life’s’ story. In group you can expect to engage in peer dialogue as to the voices we hear, explore the source and origin of those voices and learn to live a functional life within the confines of our experiences in a non-clinical setting with non-clinical language. Our shared experiences promote community and solidarity. Appleseed holds a HVN group we call Celebrate Your Mind Support Group. The group meets every 2nd and 4th Tuesday from 11-12:30pm. It is held at the Ashland Professional Building on the corner of 34 W. Second St. and 221 Church St. in Suite 12. The suite is labeled Safe Haven. If you are interested in the group please call 419-281-3716 and let the staff know you are interested in the Celebrate Your Mind Support Group.