For Time To Talk Day, Mark shares his story of finding hope again after facing very hard times thanks to the support of his Mary Frances Trust (MFT) Co-Ordinator. With a renewed sense of worth, he is now volunteering for MFT using his lived experience to support others through their own journey.
“Hi, my name is Mark and I’m a client and lived experience volunteer for Mary Frances Trust. This is my journey.
I’m actually surprised I’m writing this because I’m no-one special so why would anyone want to read anything about me? To be honest if it wasn’t for my MFT Co-ordinator Kate, giving me the confidence to write this, I don’t think I would have.
I had reached out for help a few times and haven’t really had the greatest of experiences with the help I was given so I didn’t really think much when I left a message with MFT. It wasn’t very long after that I got a call from Kate. She told me all about MFT and asked if I was happy for her to be my coordinator, which I agreed to because of the way she spoke to me, listened to what I was saying, her kindness, respect and the patience she had with me when I was spiralling down. I thought everything and everyone was against me and I had no sense of worth.
She made another phone appointment because I wasn’t ready for one-to-one or face-to-face group sessions. Kate was very understanding and really listened to what I was saying, which is so empowering. She arranged for me to go on online group sessions run by MFT.
I had to fight my head to join the first group session, I was telling myself “nothing works, why am I bothering, I’m never gonna be better, I’m a waste of time, everyone will hate me.” But I’m so glad I did, the other clients were completely different to me but I understood them and they got what I was saying, the facilitators were awesome, caring and listened (it’s hard to find real listeners!). I carried on going to the groups, they actually made me feel good about myself. The phone appointments carried on with Kate and she saw something in me no-one else had before. She said I would make a good volunteer because I understood people and sometimes have the right words to say.
So now I co-facilitate online groups and have helped with co-producing the “Let’s Talk” online programme. I have met so many lovely people in the groups. Co-facilitating has been the best medicine for my own mental health recovery journey, so much so that I am now applying for jobs thanks to MFT, to my coordinator Kate and the confidence she gave me.
A very huge thanks to Kate and MFT for giving me back the feeling of worth 😊”
Want to blog for us?
Did this inspire you to share your story? Our blog platform is reserved to our clients, staff and volunteers to share their own stories, so if you would like to contribute too, please email Connie, our Communications Lead, at firstname.lastname@example.org. The blogs can be poems, song or videos – whatever format you feel most comfortable with. And if you’re new to blogging, we can give you some tips to get you started!