CLEARFIELD COUNTY, Pa. (WTAJ)– A local woman will travel to Boston this weekend to participate in a national walk for suicide prevention.
Jess Dreese said she decided to participate in the walk of her own struggles with mental health that started in 2008.
“I was working a job I liked, my life was normal, and I could tell I was starting to get depressed for no reason, really anxious,” Dresse said.
After trying medications and therapy, she attempted suicide that year.
“I ended up in the hospital and they diagnosed me with bipolar disorder,” she said. “From 2008 to 2014 it was a struggle. In and out of the hospital, trying different meds, therapies.”
But that got her walking down the path of recovery.
“I think everything I went through, in a weird way, was my purpose because I realized I want to help other people that are struggling,” Dreese said. “So when i found out about the walk, i realized that’s something i can help with yearly.”
This will be Dreese’s second year at the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention’s Out of the Darkness Overnight Walk.
It’s a total of 16 miles– starting at 9 at night– and aims to raise money and awareness for mental health and suicide prevention.
“Maybe I can’t change the whole world in the mental health field, but it’s making strides in the right direction,” Dreese said.
Dreese is selling t-shirts to help her reach her fundraising goal. You can purchase a shirt here.
To learn more about Dreese’s story, or to donate directly, click here.