People Making a Difference

One thing we have learned is that the people making the most difference are the ones who have lost a child, or have a child struggling with addiction, and are now arming themselves with knowledge.
Sandy Swenson
She lives in the place where love and addiction meet - a place where help enables and hope hurts - and has become a powerful voice for moms with addicted children, putting their thoughts and feeling into words.

"We may often feel fragile, but we are strong. And we are many."

Sandy Swenson

Maureen Cavanagh
The founder of Magnolia New Beginnings, a nonprofit peer-support group for those living with or affected by substance use disorder. She has been recognized by The New York Times, CNN, and other outlets for her work fighting the opioid crisis and the stigma that surrounds it.

IF YOU LOVE ME
A Mother's Journey Through Her Daughter's Opioid Addiction

Magnolia New Beginnings

Tracie Carter
Founded the Facebook group CAN YOU SEE ME NOW. She wants the world to see that people who lose their battle with addiction are our sons, daughters, grandchildren, siblings, nieces, nephews, cousins, neighbors and friends. This is the 10th banner she created (along with a YouTube video). These banners are used in Awareness Walks and fundraisers across the country.
Debi Nadler
Debi lost her son, Brett, in 2018 after battling addiction for years. Her group’s current focus is legislation requiring funding for mental health education, beginning in elementary school. She is the founder/creator of the website Moms Against Drugs and organizes the Drug Epidemic Walk Across America.

Moms Against Drugs

Moms Against Drugs Facebook

Becky Fuqua-Spuhl
Becky lost her daughter Jena Marie, on Oct 1, 2018, after a short battle with addiction. Becky wants you to know it is your choice as parents to engage and break the noise barrier! It is NOW about "YOUR CHOICE" as a parent to determine how you can change your mindset on Addiction.

Becky: "Jena Marie Fuqua, my daughter, my first glimpse of how much the Lord must love me, is one of many stolen. It will take all of us to scream from the rooftops to bring an end to the broken system that left me without my little ūüź¶ bird and leaves many suffering in silence."

Becky is the founder of:

Humanizing Addiction

With a Facebook page by the same name.

Sam Snodgrass

Sam is a behavioral pharmacologist with a doctorate in biopsychology. He is in long term recovery himself from addiction to opioids. His understanding of the disease is key to helping people with SUD's. Sam has founded two organizations which have come out of his personal experience.

- Broken No More is an educational and advocacy group.
At Broken No More we promote scientifically valid information for our members on substance use, addiction, drug policy, and the means to mitigate the harms of substance use for the individual and for society.

Broken No More

- GRASP is a non-profit organization whose mission is to provide a safe, non-judgmental forum, so that people grieving the loss of a loved one to substance use may share their feelings, stories, struggles, strategies and support with each other, honor their loved ones and grieve their losses.

GRASP

Jessica Hulsey Nickel

Founded the Addiction Policy Forum in 2015 to help families and patients struggling with the disease of addiction. Frustrated by the lack of progress in improving outcomes for those individuals and families struggling, she started this nonprofit. THe 185aDay project is an tangible way to see the amount of people a day that are lost to overdose. The CDC, in 2018, revealed that more than 67,367 people died from drug overdoses - 185 a day! 

185aDay remembers those lost to drug overdose and allows you to add YOUR story to the website. A great remembrance to your loved one. 

185aday

Addiction Policy Forum

Gary Mendell

Gary Mendell is the founder, Chairman and CEO of Shatterproof. After losing his son Brian to addiction in 2011, Gary founded Shatterproof to spare other families the tragedy his had suffered. Since founding Shatterproof in 2012, Mr. Mendell has been a national leader in the addiction space creating solutions that will create more access to treatment for Opioid and Substance Use Disorders. He is a frequent speaker on how our society can end the stigma unjustly associated with addiction.

Shatterproof

Theresa Clower

When Theresa Clower lost her son to a drug overdose in 2018, she needed to find a way forward. Clower said the project designed itself. She wanted to do something for those who were in similar situations, but she said she wanted it to be more than drawing a portrait and mailing it to a family. ‚ÄúI wanted more community, more connection, more support,‚ÄĚ Clower said. ‚ÄúI also wanted to think in terms of eliminating the stigma that often accompanies drug addiction.‚ÄĚ To accomplish this goal, Clower plans to host an Into Light exhibition in every state. For more info: Into Light Project