I referred myself to Restore after leaving my job, which was a traumatic time for me. Within a couple of weeks I was able to start at Restore.
I’d seen the sign on Cowley Road before, but had no idea that there was such a wonderful haven hiding behind that gate! There is still a lot of stigma about mental health, but once you pass under that sign it’s all forgotten. Everyone you come into contact with, the staff, the volunteers and the other members, have all had some experience of what it’s like to struggle with mental health issues. They don’t judge you.
It took me a while to find my niche, but I was able to try lots of different things, and everyone was so understanding, friendly and helpful. Now I work in the café, serving customers and making coffees. I like to be kept busy. At Restore I’ve been able to get into a routine that’s helped me feel able to work again. After leaving work I felt I would never be able to work again, but now I’m working part-time. I feel I have the space to figure out what I really want to do next.