Did you know that the US has celebrated Mental Health Month every May since the 1940’s? For that same period of time, Fountain House has been pioneering innovative ways for people with serious mental illness to live healthier, longer lives.
This year, the theme of Mental Health Month is Fitness #4mind4body. At Fountain House, we know you can’t have a healthy mind without a healthy body. That’s why, for the month of May, we are showcasing the work we do at Fountain House to ensure our members are equipped to lead healthy lives, both mentally and physically.
Read Izzy's story below to learn how Fountain House has helped him accomplish Fitness #4mind4body.
Izzy was diagnosed with schizophrenia as a teen, but his medication made him feel awful and he refused to take it. “The medicine they gave me made me so tired,” Izzy recalls, “I couldn’t get out of bed. I would just eat fast food and drink 2-liter bottles of soda. I was close to 200 lbs and had no energy.”
Then, he heard about Fountain House. Fountain House helped Izzy learn how to manage his illness, get a job, and move into his first apartment. But maintaining his mental health took a lot of energy, and his physical health was still a challenge.
That’s when Izzy started to take advantage of the Wellness Program at Fountain House. Through the program’s community support, classes, and exercise equipment Izzy lost over 30lbs. “Going to the Wellness Center has helped me get in shape…” says Izzy, “but it’s also helped me deal with my illness.”
Izzy has not been hospitalized since he’s been at Fountain House. Today, he is passionate about diet and exercise and helps fellow members to change their diets, get in shape, and stop smoking. “I love it. There is nothing in the world like it. And there’s nothing like Fountain House.”