Photo @hammond_robin for @onedayinmyworld. “We met in the institution but love is not allowed so we lived a secret for 11 years. I say I was in prison before. Now I love to make apple pies and buy spices and oils for cooking. It is wonderful for us to have our own keys, to buy fresh juice and to take a bus. We are satisfied with our neighbours. We are happy.” Branka Reljan (right) with her boyfriend Drazenko Tevelli (left) former resident of ‘Home for the Insane.’ They met while both institutionalized at the ‘Home for the Insane’ before its doors were closed and the beneficiaries were moved into the community. Since that time, they have flourished.
Rehabilitation cannot take place behind the high walls of an institution. In four years, 172 out of 200 people have moved from ‘Home for the Insane’ in Osijek, Croatia, into apartments. Staff have trained to serve as assistants in the community. For many beneficiaries it is the first time they’ve experienced true freedom. This facility in Osijek is the only one out of 26 in the country to implement the UN convention to deinstitutionalize.
#inmyworld is designed to expose the challenges faced by people living with mental health issues and give them the chance to be seen, heard and valued. @witness_change is a nonprofit that aims to improve life for excluded groups by amplifying their stories. This project was funded in part through a grant from @opensocietyfoundations. To see more or to share your own mental health story please follow @OneDayInMyWorld