Our Box of Hope appeal has been developed by Cassandra Jane, an inspirational woman who has turned her mental illness experience as a new mother into a positive and is now looking to help others.

Here's Cassie's story...

In 2019 my whole life changed when I suddenly developed psychosis whilst pregnant with my daughter. In a matter of days, I went from a confident working professional with no history of mental illness to an inpatient being treated for psychosis after thinking I could fly and attempting to take my own life.

It was during this time that I felt at my lowest - I truly believed that I would never recover; I would always be ill; I would lose my child because people wouldn’t let a mad woman have a child; it felt like there was no hope – no need to carry on – I would never get better.

Thankfully, after quite a while, moments got better, and then hours, then days, then good weeks passed, and months, and this illness that had once stolen so much from me no longer ruled my days and nights and I could finally breath again. I was no longer drowning in my own guilt and shame and life returned to a new normal. There was hope again.

Box of Hope aims to give new patients with the Oxfordshire Perinatal Mental Health Service a welcome box to give them hope in those first dark days of illness – something to return to when things get difficult – a realisation that they will eventually get better.

Each box will contain hand-picked items chosen to comfort mothers. This could include high quality soaps and bath salts to use at home. A candle and notebook to help reflect and journal their journey. Cards of truth which will have lies we tell ourselves on one side and truths that we need to hear on the other. And CHOCOLATE - which I found to be the most important drug after medication. Most importantly each box will include a letter from a past patient encouraging and sharing their own story of recovery. 

Wouldn’t it be amazing if every mother being treated knew that one day, it will get better.

Cassandra Jane (Box of Hope Founder)