When Karen first came to the Clinic more than two years ago, she was in a horrible state of depression and had truly lost the will to live. In fact, it took all she had to leave her home and seek medical attention for symptoms that she could no longer ignore. During her medical visit with Nurse Practitioner Ellen Olivar, Karen was sobbing uncontrollably. Noticing that Karen was in a very fragile state, Ellen offered to connect her with the Clinic’s Behavioral Health Team. It was then that Karen met Jose Albert and Rebecca Gillogly who helped to overcome her state of hopelessness and regain the will to live.

“Before (I started coming to) Saban Community Clinic, I was just a shell, or a shadow of what I used to be before my Mom’s stroke and my Dad’s death. I cried everyday and struggled to make it through each day. Now with the help of Saban, slowly and gratefully, I am finding my way back out of the pain and darkness that used to overcome me. I started to remember who I am as a person, started to remember my dreams, that I still had dreams and ambitions. With the Clinic’s help, I found my strength to get up again.”

With mental health issues in her family, Karen took it upon herself to get help before it was too late. Through individual and group therapy sessions, Karen has, as she says, “learned to focus on the brighter side of life instead of the darkness.”

Karen’s gratitude extends beyond thanking the staff for everything they have done for her. You’ll often find her volunteering at Clinic events and helping in any way she can. Recently, she was even voted onto our Board of Directors as a consumer member!

Karen Sanchez