As we continue to explore supporting mental wellness on the Southcoast, it’s time to meet the people who have been doing this work professionally for years.
All of them care deeply about ending mental health stigma. Some of them offer direct treatment to those in need, but more often than not, they work quietly behind the scenes connecting people and resources or making it possible for programs to continue to run smoothly.
They’re often unsung heroes, and mostly don’t even notice how important their roles are, but Hope and Help Southcoast would not exist if not for them.
Today’s conversation is with Brittany Botelho from Coastline Elderly. Brittany works with elders who want to maintain their independence but need assistance in doing so. Her strength is finding the best solution to any of the obstacles and problems they encounter. She believes in reaching out your hands to help whoever is in front of you and wants to see everyone connecting with each other in this way.
This is how she describes it: I have always been a 'jump in' and help kind of person; a 'sit with someone in the dark kind of person' and that is exactly what is needed to end the stigma around mental health; acknowledgment and unity.
Name: Brittany Botelho
Lives in: Acushnet
What she does: Home Care Manager for Coastline Elderly
Her Superpower is: Solving problems
How does your work contribute to better mental health in the Southcoast?
Through my work with Coastline I am able to connect with elders from Marion to Dartmouth who are encountering barriers which prevent them from accepting services that they need to maintain their independence.
I work collaboratively with the individual through a person-centered approach to knock down those barriers. I form a partnership with the elder built on empathy and trust to remove the barriers which prevent them from reaching their goals.
Often, these barriers are related to the individual’s social and emotional health.
What inspired you to work to end mental stigma?
I was inspired to help end the stigma around mental health because I have always had a desire to help people. I have always been a 'jump in' and help kind of person; a 'sit with someone in the dark kind of person' and that is exactly what is needed to end the stigma around mental health; acknowledgment and unity.
What's your advice to others looking for a way to contribute?
I would tell anyone who is looking to contribute to ending the mental health stigma to reach out to others. Reach out to your neighbor, colleague, acquaintance, friend and be there for them. Sometimes you can be there for them by helping them with a task and other times you can be there for them by lending your ear.
Are there ways others can help you with the work you do?
Yes, Coastline does have volunteer opportunities. Please contact Coastline directly at (508) 999-6400 to learn more about the opportunities available.
Want to learn more about Brittany and Coastline and the work they do with the elderly in the Southcoast? Call Coastline directly at the number above, log onto their web page at coastlinenb.org or follow them on Facebook.