Aspire Health Alliance helps North Quincy man fight mental illness

QUINCY – Arthur Dickerson, 51, speaks slowly and cannot breathe easily. Severe mental illness plagued him most of his adult life, leading him to be incarcerated at Bridgewater State Hospital for 14 years.

He was released in 2014 and thanks to community clinical services for adults, he is regaining psychiatric stability.

In 2014, when he was released from prison, he was homeless and was hospitalized several times in psychiatry for intense mood swings, disorganization and delusional thoughts. But thanks to the Aspire Health Alliance and community adult clinical services, Dickerson is improving.

He said, “My focus is better and they are helping me stay.”

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From living in a homeless shelter to working in a

After living in a homeless shelter, he was able to get an apartment in a boarding house in Quincy in 2020. He takes medication and regularly visits psychiatry. This regular treatment has lasted for five years, and thanks to mental health services and safe housing, Dickerson is able to work. But her goal is to work more regularly, to be productive in her community.

Currently he works part time at a homeless shelter in Roxbury.

“I handle cleaning and stuff like that. I manage the people who sterilize the shelter. There are a lot of people, so we have to keep wiping it down. They say things like, “What am I doing now? And I show them what to do and he does it. Someone will come back and need more things to do. It feels good to know that I can help someone.

Arthur Dickerson chats with a friend on the front porch of his North Quincy home on Thursday, December 2, 2021.

Dickerson said the demand for homeless shelter assistance is greatest in the winter.

For the first time in his life, Dickerson is regaining his balance through stable living conditions and therapy.

“I have to get used to it, it’s easier now. I do a lot of programs. I am slowly coming back to the community.

He is thankful that his condition is under control and he can see things more clearly.

“I just take it every day, day in and day out,” Dickerson said. “I’m going for a walk, to sit with my family. I like to go for a walk. I like to swim. I like to go to the Y, to walk around the neighborhood.

Arthur Dickerson is all smiles as he walks through his North Quincy neighborhood on Thursday, December 2, 2021.

“My neighbors are good. I say hello.

Dickerson needs help with basic items such as clothes and groceries so he can get back on his feet and work steadily and continue to do and feel better.

Email Suzette Martinez Standring: [email protected] or visit

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Lend a Hand, the Patriot Ledger’s annual holiday charity program, began in 1998 and has raised more than $ 3.3 million for families and people in need of the South Shore. Working with three established community service agencies – Quincy Community Action Programs, South Shore Community Action Council and Aspire Health Alliance – Lend a Hand presented compelling stories of those in need and invited readers to open their hearts and wallets. to help.

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