By JESSICA BAKER
Published: July 8, 2014
On June 21st, Project HEAL (Help to Eat, Accept, and Live) held the “Faces of Recovery” showcase in New York City. Project HEAL is a nonprofit organization that, among other things, provides grant funding for inpatient, residential, and outpatient treatment for individuals with eating disorders who cannot afford treatment. As we have discussed in several blogs over the years, this type of support can mean all the difference in recovery. Even though eating disorders have one of the highest mortality rates of all mental illnesses and can require intensive treatment costing well over $100,000, insurance companies often refuse to cover eating disorder treatment costs and most people can’t afford to pay out of pocket. In the 5 years since Project HEAL’s inception, they have helped nine individuals receive treatment.
The “Faces of Recovery” showcase was the nonprofit’s sixth annual fundraising gala. The exhibit was a collection of 150 black and white photographs by Steven Eichner, showcasing the many faces of and attitudes toward eating disorder recovery. Depicted in the photos are eating disorder survivors holding signs that say what recovery means to them. Some examples include: “Recovery is embracing my quirks,” and “Recovery is using my voice and owning it.”
Brian Cuban, who visited UNC CEED last summer, hosted the event. As an eating disorder advocate, Mr. Cuban also serves on the Advisory Board for Project HEAL. He fought anorexia and bulimia nervosa for 27 years, beginning in the late 1970s when very little was known about eating disorders. Mr. Cuban was part of the exhibition and chose the phrase, “Recovery is ageless” for his photo. He chose the phrase because he wants others to know that it is never too late to recover from an eating disorder. Mr. Cuban began his journey towards recovery at age 45. For more information about Project HEAL, visit website.