People with disabilities have always had a voice. We’re just teaching the world different ways to listen.
A disability victim services agency

Deaf woman with short hair signing

Help Us Show Them Someone Cares

November 13, 2020

One person holds a notecard with a galaxy on it and another person holds a card with a poem printed on it. On the table under their hands is a pile of cards and poems.

In the spring, we launched our first project with our partners at the Mental Health and Recovery Board of Ashland County and Catholic Charities Ashland County. Their dedicated volunteers penned hand-written notes for every patient at Ohio’s six state-run psychiatric hospitals — 1,100 in all. Each patient also received a poem written by a volunteer, printed on nice paper.

At the same time, we worked with the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services (OhioMHAS) to set up Amazon Wish Lists for those hospitals, so our neighbors in mental health treatment would know they were not alone.

The project was successful. Here are some of the responses we received:

From a patient:
“These people took a lot of time to make us feel better. It made my heart feel better that someone cares.”

From hospital staff:
“I wanted to express our gratitude for the ‘Message of Hope’ cards for our patients. Our patients loved the letters that was previously sent so I know they will enjoy these cards. Our social workers have been reading the letters during their morning Community meetings. The patients are delighted to know that people are thinking about them during this time. It really means a lot to the patients (and staff) and the smiles on their faces is so rewarding.”

From a patient:
“I feel inspired by the card.”

From hospital staff:
“We weren’t sure if our little event would be over in 15 minutes or last longer based on the patients’ response. It was a good half hour that we had together and with the remaining time they had, they had the opportunity to get outside. I opened it up describing the wish list and read the kind words that the donors wrote on the receipts. We then passed out the cards and poems, and the patients talked about how nice it is to be remembered and how it wasn’t just words but through action.”

Now You Can Make a Difference

Through the end of November, three OhioMHAS psychiatric hospitals are participating in another Wish List project with the AACs. Once again, our partners in Ashland have been hard at work writing more note cards, and links to each hospital’s wish list can be found below. You can also find detailed step-by-step instructions for using Amazon Wish Lists at the bottom of this page. You must have an Amazon account to participate.

Thank you so much for helping us support our neighbors.

Notecard (Inside)Northwest Ohio Psychiatric Hospital
Toledo, 116 beds
Wish List: https://a.co/0cCpb5L

Summit Behavioral Healthcare Hospital
Cincinnati, 291 beds
Wish List: https://a.co/4aahGoH

Twin Valley Behavioral Healthcare Hospital
Columbus, 178 beds
Wish List: https://a.co/721Ufmq

 

 

Step-By-Step Instructions for Using Amazon Wish Lists

  1. Click on a Wish List link above, then add items to your Amazon cart. You can only send items to one location at a time, so orders for multiple hospitals and your own personal Amazon orders must be made separately. You must have an Amazon account to participate.
  2. When you’re ready, click the “Proceed to checkout” button.
  3. Under “Choose a shipping address,” select the hospital’s Volunteer Coordinator, who should be listed first under “Other Addresses.”
  4. Click the “Use this address” button.
  5. Under “Choose gift options,” you can write a gift message for each item if you like. Make sure to keep your message positive and only use your first name if you choose to sign it.
  6. Click the “Save gift options and continue” button.
  7. Under “Choose a payment method,” select the way you want to pay for your order.
  8. Click the “Use this payment method” button.
  9. Under “Review items and shipping,” choose your shipping preferences.
  10. Review your order to be sure everything looks correct. Double check that the shipping address is to the hospital’s Volunteer Coordinator.
  11. When you’re ready, click the “Place your order” button.