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This is not my normal blog on mental illness policy, but since Kenn Dudek is retiring I wanted to say something about him. Kenn has been President of Fountain House for over 25 years and a relentless advocate on behalf of people with the most serious mental illnesses. He is a hero of mine.
After visiting Fountain House Farm once a month for the past nine years, Chaitanya refers to herself as a “veteran”. She is frequently called upon to lead groups of members experiencing the farm for the first time. “Staff rely on veterans like me to go up and show people the ropes … and make sure things are done right.”
I had written in my book of my belief that my brother could have been helped by “programs that would enable him, and others with schizophrenia, to participate in society rather than be pushed to its fringes.” And now, suddenly, I was standing in just such a place.
My mental illness was and is a small part of me, but when I was highly symptomatic I let it define me. I found others that felt like me, and together we began to realize that we were so much more than our mental illness.
@FountainHouse47: An interesting read on the complexities of early, bipolar diagnosis. https://t.co/Ycq67N19QB https://t.co/ztJcl9PcmD
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