It’s Mental Health Awareness Month! This an important month dedicated to addressing mental health issues, supporting the people around us and reducing stigma. This is incredibly important, especially now with the statistic that every family in the U.S. is affected by mental health. I’m unfortunately not surprised. I grew up in Broomfield, Colorado, and in our youth community, the struggles with mental health were not at all unheard of. My peers and I noticed this struggle all around us. Everyone seemed to have a heartbreaking mental health story whether they or their loved ones were affected by mental health.
Because we saw it so often, my friends and I were deeply touched by this issue and we wanted to somehow uplift our general community. As a result, we created this amazing mental health project called A Reason To Live, where we ask people around us what their “reason to live” is and share their reason anonymously on a large platform.
So what is a reason to live? A reason to live is unique for every person. It’s an individual's reason to keep going, something they look forward to or something that makes them happy. It is truly anything that is important for that individual. We have already gathered reasons that range from “skiing” to “because I’m excited to see what comes next” to “laughing off embarrassment” to “when I get a high-five from friends.” to “when I get a compliment from strangers.” These reasons to live are essentially personalized snippets of positivity.
As we gather reasons to live from people, our goal is to also share them with others. We believe there is a power in sharing your reason to live. When you share your reason, you are giving someone else a reason to keep going. Along with sharing reasons to live with our audience, we also share mental health resources and health tips that encourage people to take care of their mental health and themselves. With these elements, our goals lie in mental health awareness, spreading positivity and resources, and uplifting the collective mental health of our community.
We have gathered reasons to live through social media and conversations. However, we wanted a more community-oriented way to gather reasons to live. So we partnered with our local library and a local mental health council to create an interactive installation of our Reason To Live project during Mental Health Awareness Month. From May 1 to May 31, anyone can come into the library, write down their reason to live and hang it up on the installation. Afterwards, they can read the reasons that other people have put on the installation and connect with our mental health resources!
This has been an amazing project and we already have 142 reasons up three and we only started 4 days ago! As I read the incredible reasons that people have already put up, I’m touched by how accessible it is to all people of all ages. Little kids have written about their mom while older generations write about their grandkids. I read one yesterday that said “To see tomorrow's sun.” It has shown that something simple can truly have a large impact on our communities.
We live in a time where mental health is unfortunately an issue many people struggle with. But we also live in a time where we have so many avenues to share our support and our positivity. The Reason to Live project really embodies this and whether it's through virtual or in-person interaction, we are looking to spread our support and positivity in any way we can. We are excited to see what people have to share.
You can interact too!
- If you know someone in Colorado, please tell them to visit the Broomfield Library at any library hour from May 1 - May 31 and interact!
- If you want to share your own Reason To Live but are not able to visit, share your reason virtually at this link. You can even scroll through this site and read other reasons that people have already put up!
- You can visit our social media to learn more about the A Reason To Live: @areason2livee on Instagram and TikTok
- You can even browse through our website to learn more!
I’m so excited to hear your reason to live.