Bram’s Story to Open Door to People Seeking Hope
Published Dec 12 2022 10:45 PM 3,288 Views
Microsoft

In this article, we feature a Microsoft Azure MVP in the Netherlands, Bram van den Klinkenberg, who established a new global community, Neurodivergence and Mental Health in IT. He was diagnosed with ADHD and suffered from health issues. And now, he devotes himself to giving a helping hand to the people who look for hope.

 

Bram posted his personal story on LinkedIn and shared that he was struggling with mental health issues and burnout last May. With the help from his wife, family, friends, psychologist, and employer, he is trying to deal with his ADHD and mental health issues to improve his personal and work life.

 

During his journey through dealing and coping with his issues, Bram realized that sharing his personal story with others empowered him to have hope and energy. As soon as an idea of building a new community came out, he started a meetup group to provide a safe place for people who struggle with neurodivergence and/ or mental health issues.

“In October 2022, we had our first meetup where we just shared our personal stories. It gave all of us a sense of hope that we were not alone. It is important for us to create a safe environment that enables people to share about their struggles and feel that there is always someone there to listen and help!” Bram says.

 

He is planning to organize the monthly meetup as a “regular check-in” to share personal updates with each other, such as how community members are doing, what they feel, new struggles, and explore how the community can help members. Bram mentioned, “I also seek speakers who can deep dive into a specific subject (e.g. ADHD, autism, depression, etc.). We can learn a lot as a group and apply our learning to our personal and work life.”

 

Bram believes people should have a safe place to talk about neurodivergence and mental health openly. To accomplish this, he is working hard on planning further community engagements which brings more visibility and reaches more community members. His goal is for the community to grow together and members to feel a sense of being included.

 

It is a small community so far, but I am proud of the members who joined this community. Some of them have already shared their personal stories in the first meetup. Let’s make this group sustainable and open to anyone! And let us speak out so talking about neurodivergence and mental health is no longer a taboo,” says Bram.

 

If you are looking for a place to learn about yourself or be an ally to others, join his community meetup and share your story with Bram and community members.

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