Raj knows how it feels to experience mental illness and have no one to turn to for help.

The 39-year-old tailor lives in Eastern Nepal, with his wife and two teenage daughters. The village where he and his family lives is surrounded by rolling hills covered with tea and cardamon plantations, miles away from any large urban area.

Like most men in his village, Raj always felt the need to be the family’s breadwinner and to be strong, dominant and in control. But all of this changed the day he witnessed the tragic death of one of his closest friends:

“After this terrible incident, I could not focus or look after myself and my family. At some point, I started hearing voices calling me, especially of my friend who died.”

Raj felt extremely low and often found himself thinking about ending his life. For many years there was no one for Raj to turn to for help and support, so he suffered in silence, each day feeling lower and slowly withdrawing from his life.

All this changed once Jaya had opened our first free mental health clinic in the area.

For the first time, Raj and his wife visited this free, walk-in mental health clinic run by trained local health professionals. At the clinic people at risk of suicide are helped by staff who are there to listen and support each person through their journey towards recovery.

Three years into his treatment, Raj feels more confident in himself and able to overcome his struggles: “since attending the clinics, my suicidal thoughts have gone. I now feel able to concentrate at work; I feel happier and more robust, both physically and mentally.

Recently, my wife opened a cafeteria; I am so happy to be able to help her, and once again contribute to family life. I feel proud of how hard we both work to support our small family and above all our daughter’s education. Because of the support I receive through the clinics and the endless love I get from my lovely wife; I feel like a new man.”

Across the world, male suicide is often described as a ‘silent, unspoken crises. In countries like Nepal, men not only struggle to talk freely about their feelings, but also have no one to turn to for support.

With your help this Christmas, we can launch new free mental health clinics in remotes areas of the world and start listening to other men like Raj.

Because one conversation can change a life forever.

Give today and help start saving someone’s life.

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From all of us,
thank you for your support and Merry Christmas.