"An exit is an entrance into something else."
When we first started this non profit, our plan was to simply sell amazing items of positivity and encouragement to show others that they are supported, and cared about. We donate ALL proceeds from our goods to create projects that promote mental health awareness, while showing others that "someone always cares".
While that was our plan, we have learned that you need to be willing to adapt, to change and go where you are most needed.
While we had a lot of fun “finding the right items” and hearing stories of people that love our items, we found that we found our true joy in helping others. Although we enjoy both, we know we can make a greater impact if we stop the online store, and focus all of our efforts on outreach and supporting others that are hurting with mental illness.
In the 7 1/2 months since we started “Live Inspired 365”, we have met so many amazing people, and have heard many impactful stories of the people we have helped.
These are just some of the projects that we have created and completed in just a few short months:
-Partnered with Barre3 & Saint Katharine Drexel Elementary School to collect art & therapy supplies for patients seeking treatment.
-Partnered with BritZa Performing Arts Studio to create cards to show “that someone cares”.
-Donated hundreds of “welcome packs” to Avera Addiction Center to be given to patients seeking treatment for addiction. While they already received a few items on admission, we knew we could add a special touch to provide encouragement and support.
-Donated thousands of journals, stickers and other tangible items to Avera Behavioral Health to be used for patients seeking inpatient treatment. We know how important journaling is when you are struggling, and we wanted to offer this, to help them process their thoughts, and provide hope.
-Donated thousands of our custom stickers to many local non profits, organizations and schools, to spark conversations about mental health. Every. Conversation. Matters. You never know when that “small conversation” may help someone to feel loved and worthy.
-Partnered with “I’m Glad You Stayed Project” in Iowa, to help them spread the word about their organization and to hand out bracelets and resources to encourage others to “Just Keep Swimming”, and to keep saying Dylan’s name, to help others.
-Donated hundreds of gifts to “Call to Freedom”. We were heartbroken to hear that so many of their survivors have never received a birthday gift, without having to give of themselves in return, and with fear of having their gift taken from them. We donated birthday gifts for them, so they can feel supported and loved, without the fear of these gifts being taken from them.
-Donated new water bottles and stickers to children in the foster care system. We wanted them to feel support and to have one of the simple items that so many kids take for granted; a fun stainless water bottle with fun, encouraging stickers.
-Met with administration from local behavioral health facilities, to advocate for patients and their families, to brainstorm ideas that create a better place for healing.
-Collaborated with many families to create stickers in memory of their loved ones that died by suicide. These stickers are donated so that families can do something positive in their name. We have found that there is healing for families when they are allowed to talk about their loved one, as saying their name, keeps their memory alive.
-Collaborated with OGorman High School to provide hundreds of items, including fidgets, stickers, & journals for self care week.
-With every project and donation that we do, we provide resources to promote “988”-the national crisis and suicide hotline. Every one of our projects spark important conversations about mental health, and we know that EVERY conversation matters, and has the potential to help many.
As you can see, we have been incredibly busy these last few months, and need the time (and energy) to continue with the momentum we have gained. In closing down our online store, we will have more time to help others, and spark conversations about mental health. We know we can make a bigger impact if our sole focus is outreach and creating projects with whomever is willing to join us, in sparking conversations.
Our website will continue, as well as our social media accounts. Please follow along to see what we continue to do to help others. Our website will be changing as we plan to provide more resources, blog posts and opportunities to volunteer; to help us complete projects, and help others.
This is not the end of Live Inspired 365, but the beginning to expand our outreach opportunities.
Mental Health Matters.
STAY;Tomorrow Needs You.