A life worth living


Last month my post Dream a new dream was about the challenges parents of children with disabilities face when it comes to their own mental health. On my radar was a new application to investigate: JoinPanda which aims to give everyone access to mental health support. I was very intrigued.

Image is a black and white panda. The word panda is written in bold whit font below. The background is blue.

JoinPanda is a uniquely designed app where everyone who has access to the internet can join the specific live interactive sessions for free which are led by experts or peers on specific topics impacting mental health today. There is so much more too.

I like their bold mission: Everyone should have access to mental health support and resources that enable lives worth living.

The Corona Virus Pandemic accelerated the use of online platforms for social closeness. Many people who were against digital platforms found that it was the only way to connect with family, friends, colleagues, for their educational and recreational needs. More pages on social networks have been opened for support and closeness. We are now finding that our sense of belonging exists in the online groups we join. Our communities.

Bu these online communities don’t always enable a life worth living. We have more people struggling with mental health issues because of these social networks.

JoinPanda is not a social network.

It aims to “be the go-to community and marketplace for mental health care and content”.

Image is a table with three columns. The first colums lists the features of Panda, the second column lists the corresponding description, and the last colums list what features are free or paid for.

That is why I am excited about JoinPanda’s free Live Interactive Sessions (beautifully named “In the forest”, which I love), the Assessments and the Track your progress features. In my own time and in privacy, I can join sessions and engage in assessments and activities that easily give me the tools to care for myself. For further help and as a paid-for service, the Life Skills Training, and text-based Chat Support are also services that are available.

What JoinPanda means to me?

I survived childhood trauma, abuse, being a teenage mother, depression, divorce, parenting a child with multiple disabilities, and often I held on by the barest of threads. I could not afford counselling and support groups were few and far between. I could not identify that my mental health was a priority nor how to care for myself. It took a long road of heartache, pain, resilience, and courage to get to this point in life. It was a journey that taught me the value of support and a gift that I try to give to other people facing those same challenges. I am excited that JoinPanda is here and accessible to everyone so that care is only a touch away.

I will be hosting a session on Thursday, 11 November 2021 from 21:00 to 22:00 on “Support and networking for parents who are long term caregivers to their teen/adult with special needs”. Please come along and let’s learn from each other.

You can JoinPanda too

To join simply download the app here for your IOS or Android device. Sign up using the Promo Code ambp4panda, find the session title you are interested in and join. It is that simple and it is for everyone.

Desirae has three children: Savannah (25 years), Talisa (19years) and Eli Michael (13 years). Savannah was born when Desirae was eighteen years old and she was a single mother for a time before marrying Michael. Savannah is autistic and is a person with cerebral palsy. Michael and Desirae care for Savannah as she cannot live independently. Desirae worked as an Assistive Technology Advisor in the disability sector, served in the autism community, and is now employed in the child safety sector. She writes for the purpose of sharing different perspectives and to encourage a thinking line around being kinder and more considerate of other people’s experiences in the areas of parenting, childhood trauma and disability. She writes because she knows that Faith, Hope and Love abide.

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