VIDEO - We're To Be Heard, Arah Cooper's Story

arah_header

“If there’s anybody that’s having a mental challenge, I hope that they’d be brave enough to speak out. I want to let them know that they are not the only one on the earth or in society or in a community that’s going through that.” — Arah Cooper

OC87 Recovery Diaries and Philadelphia public television station WHYY teamed up with groups from four area mental health providers to create original short films that detail journeys of recovery and transformation.

The first time filmmakers were in charge of shooting, editing and structuring the video. We are pleased to present the final of the four projects We’re to be Heard: Arah’s Story, by Arah Cooper and Robert Cleveland.

Next up is the OC87 Recovery Diaries behind the scenes interview with Arah Cooper and Robert Cleveland, the creators of the above video.

Arah and Robert are from Philadelphia’s Horizon House, where Robert is a peer support specialist. Horizon House advocates and provides comprehensive, community-based services in partnership with individuals with disabilities and their families.

Arah and Robert working on the edit, Arah opens up the tripod

Arah and Robert working on the edit, Arah opens up the tripod

“There’s somebody else that is going through the same thing . . . It’s just that we’re scattered out so far from each other.” — Arah Cooper

The team tries out the camera on the tripod

The team tries out the camera on the tripod

“I like Arah very much. . . She is a survivor. She is a survivor of trauma, and her story will inform, and hopefully inspire a lot of other people.” — Robert Cleveland

Robert helped Arah tell her story of recovery. A key idea in Arah’s transformation from victim to survivor is forgiveness. In addition to other support systems, Arah plays piano to help her cope with her past in trauma.

Screen shot of the video in progress as Arah plays piano

Screen shot of the video in progress as Arah plays piano

“Oh, I love piano playing, I think it’s exciting, I think it’s an instrument that sounds so pretty. . . It relaxes me, it makes me confident. It makes me see brighter days.” — Arah Cooper

Arah beaming with the camera, Recovery Diaries’ Production Intern Laura Farrell helps out the team

Arah beaming with the camera, Recovery Diaries’ Production Intern Laura Farrell
helps out the team

“I expected to come down here to really find out who I really am. And from doing that it showed me that I’m educated more than I thought. I underestimated myself.” — Arah Cooper

Please leave a comment and watch the other I AM A VOICE HERE videos.

SaveSave

Mental health recovery inspiration on YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Never miss a single stigma-busting mental health recovery story; sign up for weekly updates here.

You have Successfully Subscribed!