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April has been involved with the BC Schizophrenia Society since 2012 and in the role of Manager for the ReachOut Team since April 2017.
My journey with the BCSS began as family member looking for support with my family members living with mental illness. My father was diagnosed with Bi-Polar at the age of 45, my sister was diagnosed with Bi-Polar at the age of 18 and my brother was diagnosed with Schizophrenia at the age of twenty-one.
I was having challenges in supporting my sister who was in a relapse at that time, and after visiting the BCSS Kelowna Branch, I received the support and education which enabled me to better understand mental illness and provided me with the skills and tools to assist my family members.
Taking the Strengthening Families Together course was the best gift I could have received from the BCSS. After taking the SFT course, it felt as though a huge burden had been lifted from my shoulders. I was now equipped with the knowledge and tools to better understand and support my family members.
I began volunteering for the Kelowna Branch BCSS back in 2012 and continue to volunteer today. I became a board member in 2012 and now I am the current President of the Board of the BCSS Kelowna Branch. I am also the Regional Educator for the Kelowna region promoting and delivering the Strengthening Families Together Course, facilitating the Family Support Group and the Partnership Program in our community.
Reachout Psychosis Manager
The work I do for the BCSS is my passion and every family member that connects with me is provided support and education in assisting with their loved one living with mental illness. The Partnership Program is my favorite program as we are educating and aiding in the removal of the stigma and discrimination that surrounds mental illness by providing education and story-telling from those living with mental illness to many high schools, colleges, UBCO and various businesses throughout Kelowna.