Resources to overcome depression and mental illness

If you need a place to spend social time, a volunteer opportunity, psychotherapy, housing or vocational training, here are some resources for people challenged by depression or another form of mental illness. Please feel free to post resources you know of which aren’t listed in a comment and I’ll add them to the list after checking them out.

  1. For US By US Self Help Center
    40 North Van Brunt Street, 2nd Floor, Englewood, NJ 07631
    Hours: Monday-Friday 1-5pm
    What it is: This program is a place where people dealing with a mental health issue of any type can spend time to socialize or spend quiet time in a place away from home. Activities take place that you can join if you like. The center is pretty much run by peers with professional oversight in the background.
    Who can participate: You may self-qualify to participate.
    Admission requirements: Drop-ins welcome – just show up. Feel free to ask a friend to bring you by.
    Work/volunteer opportunities:

    • Volunteering: can help out immediately and after a few weeks, can sign up to be on the scheduled volunteer rotation.
    • Paid positions: after volunteering for a while, people can qualify for a paid position when one opens up.
  2. Crossroads to Wellness at Care Plus NJ
    610 Valley Health Plaza, Paramus, NJ 07652
    What it is: A program which provides rapid access to comprehensive and intensive mental health services, integrated with self-directed wellness and recovery tools.
    Who can participate: All Bergen County Residents
    Admission requirements: Must be in acute need of mental health services or transitioning out of a long-term facility.
  3. Friendship House
    125 Atlantic Street, Hackensack, NJ 07601
    What it is: Support and training for mentally ill or behaviorally challenged individuals in need of vocational rehabilitation, group therapy, workplace reintegration skills and assistance, job coaching.
    Work/volunteer opportunities:

    • Supportive in-house workplace environment available on site. Pay commensurate with an individuals’ productivity level
    • Friendship House programs include
      Computer training, culinary classes, maintenance work and clerical training. Social groups, therapy groups, beauty classes, diet classes, diabetes management, groups for young people diagnosed with Asperbergers or on autism spectrum

    Admission requirements: By referral. Call to speak with a program counsellor who can help you understand the steps needed to be referred into one of the organization’s programs.

  4. Volunteer Center of Bergen County
    64 Passaic Street, Hackensack, NJ 07601
    What it is: A service that matches volunteers with non-profit organizations in need of help.
    Work/volunteer opportunities:

    • You can find a volunteer position through this organization at every level of service, skill and competency.
    • Volunteering is a great way to get out of your own head while enjoying the comraderie offered by a low-stress environment and at the same time, doing useful work for the community and maybe even upgrading your working skills.
    • Volunteer positions can lead to paying work for those open to employment opportunities. People are sometimes hired by the agencies they volunteer at when paying positions open up. Agencies also refer good volunteers to paying positions at other non-profit groups in their network

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