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After losing her brother to suicide and living with her own mental health challenges, Candice found a renewed sense of purpose and reason to care for her mental health: her daughter.
No stranger to the fear of stigma that surrounds mental illness, Candice says, “A lot of the stigma was in my own mind. I worried people were going to judge me or that people were going to think less of me—that I wasn’t competent.”
After opening up about her experiences, Candice realized that sharing her story made support and connection possible.
“Once I actually started talking, I didn’t feel the stigma. I felt love and support and that people wanted to be there with you and alongside you in all that. It gives you this confidence around your mental health, knowing people are going to be there beside you.”
The companionship and camaraderie experienced by participating in Ride Don’t Hide is what keeps people like Candice coming back. Now on her fifth year, she and her team continue to ride in memory of her brother, to end stigma and help others realize that asking for help is not only okay—it’s necessary.
Please donate to CMHA, volunteer or spread the word on social media about #GivingTuesday today!