We are united in our pain, but more importantly, in our hope

You can use your own pain, wisdom, experience, and desire to live free. When you do, life is better. The sky is bluer. We find purpose in our pain. Our pain unites us. And when we reach out to the broken, we spread hope.

“Broken” is not a word we need to be afraid of. Brokenness is life, and truth leads to hope. Broken does not mean broke forever. We heal, we help others, and sometimes, life is even better.

Who are they? (see references at bottom of page)

25% of adults had a mental illness the previous year (1)
Lifetime prevalence of mental illness is 50% (1)
Up to 1 in 11 people are clinically depressed at any given moment (1)
11% of Americans 12 or older take antidepressants (2)
1 in 4 girls, and 1 in 6 boys sexually assaulted before age 18 (3)
1.3 women are forcibly raped each minute (3)
1 in 5 women will be raped in their lifetime (4)
15-20% of veterans from all eras have PTSD in any given year (5)
6.8% of people will have PTSD in their lifetime (10.4% of women, 5% of men) (5)
A suicide every 13 minutes, 40,000 people a year (6)
For every 1 suicide, 12 people harm themselves (6)
70% of people hate their jobs or are completely disengaged (7)
70% of Americans have financial problems (8)

Where are they?

EVERYWHERE
At work
In our homes
In our churches
At the grocery store
Our sons and daughters
Our brothers, sisters, and parents
The person sitting across from you in the coffee shop
The person looking at you in the mirror

What can we do about it?

We need to reach out to one another
We need each other to make the most out of life and live free
We can’t be shy
It starts with ourselves, we need to examine our own life to have the fuel we need to help others. A passion to live is all you need to make a difference in someone else’s life.

What am I doing:

Speaking – I try to spread this message of community and hope everywhere I speak
The Ladder UPP – a tool I created based on my own recovery from brokenness to strengthen our own lives so that we can then use our wisdom and experience to interact, engage, and begin a healing conversation with others. You can start alone, but it is a great tool to use in small groups of any kind – churches, families, colleges, recovery, etc.
Who Am I? – my own story on learning how to live after the crash. Literally! A tragic jet crash made me examine my entire life in order to find a reason to live and escape the demons of severe posttraumatic stress disorder. It was a harrowing, psychedelic, thrilling, unbelievable ride, but I made it out to find love, peace, and joy. Perfect if you need a jolt of hope.

I NEED YOUR HELP!

We can only take on the immense brokenness surrounding us together. We must have faith that we will be given the strength and tools to make a difference in the lives of those we love, our neighbors, and most importantly, the “least of these” who think they are alone. It will take us all, but we can make a difference. I see lives saved and changed everyday by ordinary people like you and me. It just takes that desire to find our purpose and serve another. Our pain should unite us, and remind us how much we need each other. Your sorrow will lead to purpose if you allow your heart to be open to God’s purpose for your life. With love and grace in your heart, all your wisdom, experience, and pain will be a powerful tool that helps others out of the darkness. Click here to learn more on how to MAKE A DIFFERENCE!

Statistical References:

1: From a 2004 study by the US Center of Disease Prevention (CDC) http://psychcentral.com/blog/archives/2011/09/03/cdc-statistics-mental-illness-in-the-us/

2: From WebMD, http://www.webmd.com/depression/news/20111019/use-of-antidepressants-on-the-rise-in-the-us

3: From the National Center on Domestic Violence, http://www.ncdsv.org/images/sexualassaultstatistics.pdf

4: From the NYTimes, http://www.nytimes.com/2011/12/15/health/nearly-1-in-5-women-in-us-survey-report-sexual-assault.html?_r=0

5: From National Center on PTSD, http://www.ptsd.va.gov/professional/PTSD-overview/epidemiological-facts-ptsd.asp

6: From the American Foundation of Suicide Prevention, https://www.afsp.org/understanding-suicide/facts-and-figures

7: According to 2013 Gallup Poll, http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/70-u-s-workers-hate-job-poll-article-1.1381297

8: 2010 Pew Survey, http://crooksandliars.com/susie-madrak/pew-survey-70-americans-have-financia