Living on the day to day basis is challenging even in the best of circumstances. When the Global Pandemic known as COVID-19 hit, we all went through a shock and needed to navigate a world environment we had never encountered before in our lifetimes. Those who were already suffering through mental health issues had new anxieties to overcome. An inspirational 16-year-old teenage girl from Southern, California saw a crucial need, and through her vision she started a phenomenal service for those in mental health facilities. Natalie Salvatierra is on an ambitious journey to reach out to the mental health community, and specifically to those who suffer from OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder), in an effort to bring about hope in such a time of unrest around the globe.
Natalie created a website that allows individuals to write and receive letters who suffer from mental health disorders. “Generic uplifting letters that will be encouraging to all spectrums of mental health sufferers,” says Natalie. Through this simple, yet meaningful effort, Natalie is hopeful that certain goals will be met. These include bringing about compassion for those who are in psychological turmoil on a daily basis, from those who write the letters, and educational pursuits to learn more about stigmas of mental health patients. The realization that individuals with conditions of the mind are already feeling isolated and alone also helped trigger Natalie’s motivation to create a bridge between those who suffer, and those who can help brighten their day through the written word. Letter writing is a long lost art form that is being revisited for a more personal communication effort. Another goal to be achieved is the amount of letters being sent. Natalie set out with the ambition to encourage those interested to write out 1,000 letters. This number has recently been accomplished through the website created by Natalie, and her team who helps transcribe the letters and get them to where they need to go.
Natalie described OCD and the impact this illness has on a person who faces it. “Anxiety and OCD go hand and hand, and a lot of times things get worse before they get better,” according to Natalie. Some effects people have to endure include: not being able to function with basic life tasks, not able to get up for the day, and lacking the desire to do anything productive. The website solelysunshine.com provides coping mechanisms for OCD, so those with this condition or caretakers of people with OCD can try different strategies to help ease the symptoms. When asked about her experience in creating a way to connect people from around the globe through old-fashioned letter writing, Natalie stated “it makes me feel happy that I am helping others.” This writing project has been reaching global audiences as letters have been received from places such as Nepal, Ecuador, Germany, Pakistan, and Peru. Raising awareness for this type of project will help to fuel the desire for real human connection. Also bringing providing greater understanding for those who are not familiar with the vast suffering of those in the mental illness community.
Natalie’s drive to see the loneliness diminished helps to ignite a passion for others to extend a heart of love as well. Trying to be a light to the world is an honorable quest. Whomever is feeling compelled can join in on this project and support this mission. Imagine knowing that you are someone’s source for still believing there are good people who still care in the world? Even though you are a perfect stranger, your words through true empathy from a completely non-judgmental heart can make a person’s day so much better.
Join The Global Sisterhood, a non-profit initiative helping women and children around the world, to unite with Natalie and her intention to reach out with a true focus on making a difference worldwide! Members of the Global Sisterhood have a new opportunity to extend their generous works through writing these letters to our mental health sufferers locally and internationally. Acknowledging the need for being an encouragement to others is something we all can do. Following Natalie’s pure and altruistic lead, we can all reach out to help humanity in the most positive of ways. If taking this action sounds enticing to you, please visit Natalie’s website for more information at www.solelysunshine.com.
Natalie Salvatierra is building a platform that strengthens the notion of helping another, simply just because. In a world full of chaos and unimaginable tragedies occurring too often; Natalie’s influence is a welcome reassurance that so much light is being illuminated through society. Regardless of the culture or background of those who need us, we will be there to support through the unwavering words of encouragement written within each letter.