Two years old! Our sister chapter is busy as they pass their two year anniversary. Below is the initial news release of DBSA Dyer County opening its doors to the public.
Congratulations to the leaders and members!
New group lends support to residents facing depression, bipolar disorder
Tuesday, February 25, 2014
Dyersburg State Gazette
Deb Waldron is pleased to invite area residents dealing with depression or bipolar disorder to a new organization in Dyer County. The Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance-Dyer County is now meeting at 6:30 p.m., every second and fourth Thursday of the month. Meetings take place at First Christian Church, located at 1200 Community Park Road in Dyersburg.
The group is open to both residents battling these issues and the family and friends who long to support them. Those interested in more information on DBSA-Dyer County may contact Deb Waldron at (731) 377-1563 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
[Click to enlarge](this is were the picture was in the article)
One local couple hopes a new organization in Dyer County will provide a brand new day for residents facing depression and bipolar disorder.
Deb and Wayne Waldron of Newbern have begun the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance-Dyer County, a peer-led organization that meets twice a month at First Christian Church in Dyersburg.
"I just want people to know this is here for them," said Deb Waldron. "We are a support group for clients, family and friends. Our goal is to provide education, wellness options, peer support and help for family, friends and peers. Our group here in Dyer County will be a satellite group out of Jackson, (a group that has) been meeting for about 15 years."
The non-profit group is supported by donations, with no fee of any kind for residents who attend.
With some studies revealing that approximately 6.4 percent of the population suffers from a form of bipolar spectrum and an additional 26 percent suffer from depression, Waldron estimates a staggering amount of local residents may be battling these issues in Dyer County.
"With Dyer County having a population of around 37,000 individuals, that means up to 12,000 people may suffer with a form of bipolar or depression each day in Dyer County alone," said Waldron. "After receiving a diagnosis, many individuals (feel) scared, confused, worried or lost and leave (their doctor's) office with only brief information on medication and treatment. DBSA is a safe haven for many of these individuals."
Waldron said the DBSA incorporates trust, help, support and love into each session, encouraging individuals to speak on the matters that interfere with their everyday life, treatment, social life, judgment -- and, ultimately, the life the individual would like to achieve.
"This support group we are starting is for the afflicted individuals and their families," said Waldron. "(The group provides) the opportunity to meet people from your community who can relate to your experiences. You may learn valuable information about mental health professionals and services in your area as well as tips and techniques others use to manage their illness. (We offer) peer support and resources to help with wellness."
As a part of the DBSA, the Dyer County chapter will also have access to additional resources to aid those affected by the illnesses -- and those who support them -- in daily management of the disorders.
"I have people I can call to find out (information) for them when they need it," said Waldron. "(We want) to help them realize that they are not alone in this. We offer peer support. This is not a professionally run group. It is not run by a psychiatrist. We don't tell people how to get well. We don't prescribe anything. This group is not a substitute for professional care. We are a support group and do not endorse or recommend the use of any specific treatment or medication."
The group strives to provide:
* the opportunity to reach out to others and benefit from the experience of those who have been there
* motivation to follow the treatment plan
* understanding that a mood disorder does not define who you are
* aid in rediscovering your strength and your humor
* a forum for mutual acceptance, understanding and self-discovery
Waldron said those creating the group will have ownership of its direction.
"We have discussion time to talk about issues that affect their mental health wellness," said Waldron. "We tell them this group is for them, run by them. We tell them 'This is going to be your group.' One of our biggest issues is confidentiality. What goes on in that room will stay in that room.
"We are there to support both the person affected and those who love them," continued Waldron. "It is not just for the individual who has these issues, but for their family and friends who are also affected. We have found that the majority of people having issues like this are abandoned by family and friends because they don't know what to do."
According to Waldron, a decrease in funds on both the state and federal level make volunteer groups like DBSA Dyer County all the more important.
"State and national funding just cuts back and cuts back," said Waldron. "So these support groups and any place they can reach out to stay well are becoming more and more vital all the time. If we can get it established, (our group) will hopefully grow to meet every week like the groups in Jackson and Memphis."
For more information on the state and national DBSA organizations, visit "Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance" or "dbsatennessee" on Facebook.