Healthy Minds, Healthy Lives
September 2013
ASHA InternationalIssue No.
Hope you and your family are doing well!


Over the last few weeks, within a five-mile radius from where I live and work, there were three families in crisis. A 48-year-old mother of two struggling with schizophrenia went missing. Once a highly social, engaging woman with two Master's degrees in English literature who wrote beautiful poetry in Tamil, today, she can barely function. A 41-year old mother of two struggling with schizoaffective disorder was hospitalized due to her deteriorating health - she had lost 65 pounds in a few months, and was haunted by hallucinations - once a vibrant woman who had plenty of friends, an MBA and a career, today she spends her time talking to the imaginary demons in her head. And, a 24-year-old young man, struggling with depression, shot and killed himself. 


As debilitating as the diseases affecting each of these people are, it is the stigma surrounding mental illness that had sentenced them into lives of shame, secrecy, and needless suffering. Unfortunately, the resultant social isolation had prevented them from seeking life-saving treatment and support. Fortunately, our community volunteers are doing an incredible job in reaching out to these families and helping them on their road to recovery and wellness.


As a mother and mental health advocate, the struggles of these families break my heart, and strengthen my resolve to empower them to overcome barriers to recovery and achieve wellness. And, I salute their courage in teaching us yet again, that while medications, therapy and hospitalizations can help, community heals. Like all of us, what people struggling with mental health issues need most to recover is love, and a deep sense of connection at home, at work, and in the community. 


Dear friend, it is time we break the silence surrounding mental illness, and start the conversation about mental health. It is time we come together to create communities of understanding, compassion and inclusion. If not for us, we have to do it for our children's sake.  


Wishing you wellness, 


Gayathri Ramprasad, MBA, CPS 
Founder & President, ASHA International
Gayathri Signature 
The Healing Power of Community
The Mystery of the Rosetan People 
by Dr. Rock Positano


The Rosetans are inhabitants of Roseto, Pennsylvania, a pretty but remarkably modest village nestled in Eastern Pennsylvania.What made Rosetans die less from heart disease than identical towns elsewhere? Family ties. Another observation: they had traditional and cohesive family and community relationships. It turns out that Roseto was peopled by strongly knit Italian American families who did everything right and lived right and consequently lived longer. In short, Rosetans were nourished by people.  Read More... 


ASHA International: Bringing hope and healing to people's lives.
Dear friends, 
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Gayathri Ramprasad, MBA, CPS, is not a doctor, therapist or health care professional. She is a mental health advocate and Certified Peer Specialist (CPS). The information shared in this E-mail is for general information purposes only and therefore not intended to replace the medical advice afforded by physicians or other healthcare professionals. 


In This Issue
The Healing Power of Community
Real People, Real Recovery
Heroes in our Midst
Unpcoming Events
About Us
Real People, Real Recovery
Profiles of Courage, Hope & Resilience 
Eleanor Longden: The voices in my head
Eleanor Longden: The voices in my head
To all appearances, Eleanor Longden was just like every other student, heading to college full of promise and without a care in the world. That was until the voices in her head started talking
ASHA International Salutes The Banyan
The Banyan Movie
The Banyan Movie
The Banyan is a not for profit organization based in Chennai that works for the cause of homeless persons with mental illness. Over the last 13 years, The Banyan has rescued over 1500 women and enabled close to 1000 women, not just recover from the illness but to also trace their lost steps back to their families and communities. Learn More...


October 18, 2013: 
Culture Counts: Variations in Cultural Value Systems and Its Impact on Mental Health & Wellness - 9:00 AM - 12:00 PM, DoubleTree Hotel (Cascade Ballroom) 1000 NE Multnomah Street Portland, Oregon 97232. Presented by Cedar Hills Hospital 
October 10, 2013:
Hidden Pictures: A Personal Journey into Global Mental Health - Global Web Screening
- Check into our website for more details on October 10, 2013

October 22, 2013:


Hidden Pictures: A Personal Journey into Global Mental Health - Film Screening - 12:00 - 1:00 PM, 
8B60, 8th Floor, Oregon Health & Science University Hospital , Portland, OR


November 5, 2013:


Healing Power of Peers in Cultural Communities - 12:00 - 1:00 PM, 8B60, 8th Floor, Oregon Health & Science University Hospital, Portland, OR


If you are interesting in participating in any of our upcoming programs, please contact Gayathri at

ASHA International's mission is to promote personal, organizational, and community wellness through mental health education, training, and support.
You can make a difference!