Lending an Ear

Sometimes, all you need is someone to be patient.

To not judge.
To support.

To listen.

To be there.

 

Fifty years ago, mental wellness was a topic that was just starting to be researched, but was considered  taboo.

Twenty five years ago, dialogue surrounding mental health started to gain traction.

Today, people are slowly yet surely realising the importance of mental health and emotional well-being. Today, we are doing our best to fight the stigma that is associated with it. And now, more than ever, we need informed allies to help fight this long battle. Resources are being created to support those with mental health issues, yet there is still a long way to go.

 

We, at LonePack, understand the importance of listening and the strength that lies in supportive allies. LonePack was created with the mighty hope that efforts put into starting dialogue about mental health and normalising it would help people share their experiences, their stories and also reach out for help when they need it the most. And those efforts have now come to fruition in the form of our LonePack Buddy.

 

LonePack Buddy, simply put, is a peer-to-peer support system which provides a free, inclusive, and  non-judgemental safe space for you to talk about your concerns and worries.

 

This support system was created to establish a community of informed and trained allies who are more than willing to help you when you reach out.

 

Support in times of need Image Credits: Tim Mossholder

 

Just understanding that mental health matters is not enough. Action towards change has to start somewhere and we are taking that first step. The concept of LonePack Buddy might provoke a lot of questions in your mind – What are you doing with LonePack Buddy? How can any of us help those individuals who are affected by various mental health conditions? First of all, are you equipped to do anything? After all, not all of us can be medical professionals. But what we also realised is that not all of us have to be medical professionals to help.

 

A friend in need is a friend indeed Image Credits:Fabian Gieske

For multiple reasons, primarily due to the stigma and the associated costs, many people are unwilling to seek professional mental health care even if they realize that they need help. And this is where our Buddy comes in. Our goal is to act as a bridge between people seeking support and mental health care professionals (a sort of mental health first aid).

 

There are no profession, culture, ethnicity, or gender requirements that you need to start helping out. In fact, as we found out a few weeks after launching LP Buddy, people are less hesitant to share their worries when it comes to a friend or acquaintance, which is what Buddy aims to do: be a good friend to those who seek us out. Today, we have a number of ‘Listeners’ as we call them, from all parts of the world, helping us out with the Buddy program.

 

If you’re wondering how a Buddy can help, here are a few answer to that question, in the words of the Listeners, themselves:

 

‘A Buddy can help users in a personalised manner. Many users just want to be heard, and a Buddy can listen patiently without judgement. Others may require someone to guide them towards a new point of view which  they might be overlooking due to factors like stress, anxiety, or anything else weighing down their mind.’ -Padfoot

 

LonePack Buddy is a unique service for the Indian youth: it’s run by real volunteers typically within the same age group, who aim to provide a non-judgemental and patient space for everyone. One can talk to us about anything and everything under the sun, and we promise to listen and be supportive. Over the last few weeks, with most of us feeling cut off from our regular routines and support systems, we’ve really seen the need for a service like LonePack Buddy.’

-Snorkack95

 

When asked to describe the LP Buddy program, some of the words our Listeners used were, ‘Empathetic’, ‘Safe’, ‘Support’, ‘Real’, and ‘Trust’, which are all very true, because if Buddies have one thing in common, it’s hope. Hope that we are making a difference with our words. Hope for a better tomorrow.

 

Because as Listener ‘Sunshine’ put it:

‘Buddy is a literal representation of what Woody says; “You’ve got a friend in me!” And this friend won’t shy away when you talk about your struggles and at the same time will provide a space where you feel heard and safe.’

 

Because sometimes, all you need is for someone to lend an ear.

 

Join the cause and become a Buddy! Register yourselves on this link

 

If you want to know more, email us at contact@lonepack.org

 

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