Recently, Lydia stood up in front of a group of people and shared that part of her past. “I was in a really bad place. I was always afraid. I had panic attacks. If someone had paid me a million dollars, I couldn’t have left my apartment.”
Wellspring, a program of Lutheran Social Services of Wisconsin and Upper Michigan, is a place of peace and possibility for Lydia and hundreds of other women each year. This community resource center welcomes women who need a safe, secure place to heal and to grow in mind, body and spirit. The staff and volunteers provide peer support, personal growth opportunities, resources and referrals that help women get successfully on their feet. When Linda needed help, the staff at Wellspring was there for her.
“I started by bringing my mail to Wellspring and the staff would help me open it and do my paperwork,” she said. “I felt that Wellspring was a safe place, and I felt supported. After a while, I started to feel safer out in the world, too.”
Now, four years after she first came to Wellspring, Lydia can handle her own affairs with confidence. In fact, she just passed the state exam to become a peer specialist so that she can help others who have mental health issues.
“I feel I’ve come about a million miles,” she said. “If not for Wellspring, I would have ended up back in a psychiatric hospital. I never feel that way anymore. What a Godsend this place is."