Hey guys – I’m Casey Chon, & I’ve been managing @theprojectHEAL on Twitter for almost two years. I’ll be a senior at Hampshire College, in Amherst, MA, next year, and I study Arabic, history, and storytelling.
I found out about Project HEAL through LinkedIn, and was welcomed super warmly into the community by our co-founders Liana and Kristina.
I wanted to work with Project HEAL because although I had never had an eating disorder, I had a burning desire to make the world a more peaceful place. Working with Project HEAL helped me tap into the world of mental health and how people come to peace with themselves, a whole other aspect of what I’ve been doing.
When I first started managing the Twitter, to be honest, I had no idea what I was doing. Sure, I know how Twitter worked, but I needed to really figure out for myself how to best utilize the social media channel to Project HEAL’s benefit. Two years later, and I can say that I’ve figured out just that. Every day when I log in, my newsfeed is a mixture of so many things. Of course, there are tons of current events, celebrity news, and animal gifs (those are wonderful), and then there’s the more pointed side of the news feed, with articles about eating disorders, recovery, news from the community, etc. Connecting with our thousands of followers every day is what has made my time on Twitter so special.
But being part of the Project HEAL National Social Media Team, and also managing the Twitter, has not always been easy. Everything comes with its challenges, and for me, as a Korean-American, that was the most difficult. I actively tried to find stories and connect with people of color and underrepresented people that were affected by eating disorders to share. There have been many challenges on Twitter, but becoming a voice for minorities affected by eating disorders in any way was definitely my biggest challenge.
I’m writing this blog post as a public thank you to all of Project HEAL’s 7000+ followers on Twitter. As a rising senior in college, I no longer have the time it takes to give the Project HEAL Twitter the time it needs to grow. My time on the Project HEAL National Social Media Team has allowed me to have experiences I will never forget. Examples include going to the NYC gala in 2016 with my mom (I’ll be at the gala this May too!), and tweeting at celebrities and having the occasional response, example – Mitch Grassi from Pentatonix, whom I tweeted & is now performing at our gala! The best part about my time with Project HEAL was finding out that there was a student at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst, down the street from me at Hampshire, who was starting a chapter!
Being part of Project HEAL has allowed for an insane amount of personal growth, learning, and love. Sure, it has not always been easy, but even through those times, I’ve found so much inspiration from all of you guys in the Twitter-verse. Oftentimes, the inspirational quote pictures I post are things I need to hear in my life. I usually post them at night or in the morning, before my coffee, and when I go back to check on the Twitter, sometimes twenty people have retweeted what I’ve posted. These are the most stark reminders that we are all one giant community, and all we have to give is our kindness to each other.
As this blog post is a giant thank you, I need to thank Arwen, Project HEAL’s COO, and Liana and Kristina, our co-founders. I was welcomed into the community with giant arms, and I cannot thank you guys enough for all you do to make the world a better place.
To the 7000+ Twitter followers, I love you all. Thank you for believing in Project HEAL, being engaged, having the coolest fundraising ideas, and staying connected. You guys have made my time at the helm of @theprojectHEAL so, so wonderful.
My last day managing @theprojectHEAL is May 20. Please don’t ever hesitate to connect with me through and with Project HEAL through Twitter and our other social media channels. Carpe diem!
About the Author: Casey Chon is a rising senior studying Arabic and storytelling at Hampshire College, in Amherst, MA. She loves Project HEAL and the experiences being manager of @theprojectHEAL has provided. As these are her last few days as a Project HEAL volunteer, she invites you to connect with her via email or through LinkedIn.