Date of Award

Fall 12-3-2022

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts in Professional Writing (MAPW)



Committee Chair/First Advisor

Dr. Lara Smith-Sitton


Dr. Laura McGrath


Stories make us human, and people respond to them. The importance of mental health nonprofits is clear given the number of individuals who lean on them for support, and stories can enhance that importance. What if the leaders, volunteers, and staff members of mental health nonprofits shared their stories and gave the nonprofit a face, alongside the individuals they help?

This capstone is a collection of stories based upon the experiences of mental health nonprofit workers by way of interviews, written in the form of narratives, including an autoethnography. This project addresses the lack of stories and the perspectives of those working and leading mental health nonprofits. These narratives of working in the field can add both depth and understanding of mental health which could lead to more volunteers, staff, or leaders. The impact of these stories can be an inspiration to those wanting to work for mental health nonprofits and to prove the importance of such nonprofits and their influence.

Stories help people know that they are not alone, interpret how mental conditions affect individuals, and understand how to potentially save lives. These are important stories to tell. The voices of donors could articulate and identify the value of nonprofits. Help seekers could see that there are real people behind the organizations and consequently could be encouraged to reach out. Moreover, the stories could provide information on exactly how the organization functions, making it a useful recruitment tool.

Available for download on Saturday, December 04, 2027