Growing Mental Health Mugs into a true social enterprise

Earlier today, I took the first step towards growing Mental Health Mugs into a true social enterprise. My hope is that one day, I can offer jobs & second chances to people who need them.

Why? Because I'm a person who needed second chances & got them.

When I was 22, I sought help with addiction & got a second chance.

When I was 25, I sought help with depression & got a second chance.

Somewhere along the way, I also sought help for a whole heap of other self-destructive tendencies, like disordered eating, & got second chance after second chance (maybe I should call them 3th, 4th,...100th chances).

I have received more support, encouragement & opportunities in my 29 years than any one person deserves in their lifetime. And I want to to give back.

So today, this video that Mental Health on The Mighty made about Mental Health Mugs hit me hard.

Why? Because it was posted while I was in my first ceramics class (the first step towards the second chance program I want to launch - more details in the video).

I love how the Universe works. Of course this video was released as soon as I stopped saying "this would be cool to do" & actually took action. And my heart leapt because I saw people saying "I believe in this mission. I think this could happen." I also saw a lot of orders for mugs. Which is exactly what will make the second chance program possible.

Mental Health Mugs is a for-purpose enterprise. It's neither a non-profit (seeks donations) nor a for-profit (focuses on profit maximization). It's in between. For-purpose means that it earns money by selling products then reinvests funds into making the world a better place.

I'll be honest: when I started it, the "for-purpose" element was much smaller. I dreamed of a lifestyle business that supported my own recovery & the ability to donate money to mental health charities.

But I took a step and the path unfolded. The vision got bigger. Other people chimed in, including Sam who said "You know, you talk about people in early recovery needing job opportunities & second chances a lot. Maybe you could actually do something about that."

Will it happen? I can't say for sure, but I hope so. And I'm going to continue to take steps to try to make it happen.

Please share this video if you're comfortable doing that. Please tell people about Mental Health Mugs. Please send me ideas when you have them. Please remind me why I'm doing this when I dissolve into "I'm not good enough at life to take on something this big."

And please keep being the kind of people who give people like me a second chance.

Originally published on Facebook on March 14, 2018, in response to this video

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