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John Mele, Unity Mental Health: "You can't do this work without compassion."

 
"Health care should be compassionate," says John Mele, therapist at Unity Mental Health's outpatient clinic on West Main Street.

"Everyone is important and should be made to feel like your only patient," says John, who strives to treat all of his patients like he would want his own mother, brother or sister to be treated.

John specializes in crisis counseling and working with refugees from other countries - often with war trauma.

"You don't know where people have been. You don't know where they come from. I hear about trauma all day long. So many of our patients have witnessed such violence and deal with it every day."

How does John help? He listens. "It's about letting people cry if that's what they need. I've gone through a lot of tissues in the last 25 years! You can't do this work without compassion."