Hope, Help, and Counseling with these Incredible Nonprofits
Counselors are trained professionals that help people with all kinds of problems or illness. They help people work through everyday problems like relationship issues, sadness, or significant life transitions. They are trained to help people who have a mental illness so they can manage their symptoms. Counselors have a graduate degree – either master’s or doctoral and depending on where they are located, many are required to be licensed. You will find them in schools, military bases, hospitals, and many other important parts of society including online.
A survey done by the Barna Group estimated that four in 10 American adults have seen a counselor at some point in their lives. Whether you’re experiencing trauma, taking a doctor’s recommendation, or need someone to help you work through something, counselors are trained to help with so many different situations. We wanted to highlight the incredible work that six different nonprofit organizations are doing today for different groups in the US.
New Market, MD
This organization was founded to help coordinate and fund retreats exclusively for parents and other caregivers of disabled children and adults. They host weekend getaways to allow those family members some recuperative rest and to be part of a guilt-free, confidential community of special needs caregivers to share daily challenges with. It’s all about caring for the caregivers in any way that they can. The variety of retreats offered is incredible and provides something for everyone.
The stories shared on the review page for this organization are incredible, and I would encourage you to check them all out, but here is one so you get an idea:
“What an amazing and necessary nonprofit. My husband and I have spent years in the “trenches” of helping our 2 adopted son through extreme trauma from their pasts. It has taken a toll on us and we were desperate for rest. Our boys need 24-7 attention. It was so amazing to attend a couples retreat recently and truly unplug and relax together for the first time in a long time. We believe in this so much that we decided to become monthly donors. There are so many families out there that need this kind of support so we can continue providing excellent care to our loved ones. Thanks AMR for providing this wonderful escape for so many families!”
This mission of Wings for LIFE is to transform lives to break the generational cycle of incarceration. They work to help prisoners’ families because children whose parent(s) are in prison face a lot of challenges. They host weekly events where children of all ages are taught life-skills, manners, and how to communicate in a positive, supportive way. They serve dinner and have speakers that help educate the group on jobs, financial management, family relationships, and other issues specific to incarceration. Having a place for these kids to meet other people and learn some critical life skills is incredible.
Here is a recent story from a volunteer who helps teach a class within the program:
“I am a volunteer for Wings for L.I.F.E. I am privileged to teach a karate program designed to help children gain confidence in order to make better decisions regarding behavior and choosing friends who act positively in society. The purpose of this self defense program is to drastically reduce the number of children of current and former inmates from being incarcerated themselves from 72% to 0%.
The Wings general program assists former inmates integrate into society in a loving and accepting environment through education teaching life skills that were disregarded in high school. Often this is the only positive in a returning citizen’s day!”
This nonprofit organization helps anyone affected by the death of someone who served in the Armed Forces. They host events across the country to reach as many people as possible and help them with multiple support options. They have a 24/7 national peer support network and connections to grief resources at no cost to the survivors. They have connected with almost 100,000 grieving loved ones since 1994. Providing a phone number that allows people to connect any time of day is an incredible feat, and on top of that, they can help find the right resources for any loved one who needs support.
Here is one of the incredible stories on their review page:
“TAPS helped save my family after my husband was killed in Afghanistan. It was the only place where all of his family was welcome, no matter the relationship. It was the place that welcomed me as his widow, all of his children (ours and his kids from his first marriage) and his ex-wife. Andbecause we could all come to grieve together, our bonds have all grown stronger. The six of us travel together, my boys and I moved to be closer, and our love for each other is profound in a special way because we all experienced the loss of the same man. TAPS gave us that. TAPS accepted our unusual family. TAPS made us feel like our experience was okay.”
The Alliance of Hope for Suicide Loss Survivors is a group that provides online healing support and services for people who have suffered a loss to suicide. With their online forum, people can access 24/7 support from others. The forum is overseen by trained mental health counselors and provides many different resources.
“After losing my son in 2015 to suicide, the people in my life tried their hardest to understand what I was going through, but despite their love, and patience and support; how could they understand? I finally found Alliance of Hope 2 months later. It was this website where I found others who had lost loved ones to suicide, and they truly understood what I was experiencing. From the trauma of finding my son, to the little baby steps starting to put my life back together. I have yet to post something on this site that no one else has experienced. The members cry with me, and share my accomplishments. No matter what time of day or night I post,others are there to listen and share their journey. Three years later I still turn to AOH, and can say, that this website has been critical in my healing and journey through grief. I am forever grateful for this website, for saving my life, helping heal my broken heart . Alliance of Hope saves lives, and heals hearts. If you are a suicide loss survivior, I invite you to our forums where you will feel understood and unconditionally supported. “
Sherman Oaks, CA
Dealing with a cancer diagnosis is never easy. WeSPARK Cancer Support Center works to enhance the quality of life for cancer patients and their loved ones. They offer many different resources, including workshops on self-care and alternative healing methods and various support groups. They are currently offering only online-based classes, such as sound healing and yoga.
Reading the reviews shows how beneficial this organization has been for so many. Here is one recent review to give you an idea:
“I have stage 4 mixed mullarian cancer.
I really benefit from the toolbox series, gentle yoga, zentagle. But most of all the wonderful people at WESpark keep me going. They are a support community. The class facilitators are kind and supportive. So are the women who check us in at the front desk.
When I run into councilors or board members they are so positive and friendly. I love the cozy atmosphere at the front table with tea and fruit and all the charming artwork around the halls.
Even the bathroom is sparkling clean and decorated with nice things. When I hobble in the back deck and see the fountain and herbs it makes me smile and relax. In conclusion , the thing about my cancer journey that has surprised me has been the love and support of strangers like the wonderful people at WESpark.”
This organization has 15 locations to help men and women with their recovery from alcoholism and drug abuse. They work with people that are unemployed or underemployed, who may have a hard time accessing good care and help to get clean and sober. They have worked with over 80,000 families since 2002. So many people battle addiction and this organization recognized a need for those who may not be able to afford to spend thousands of dollars on treatment.
Here is a recent review from someone that lived at one of their campuses:
“I don’t have a long story to tell, just “my truth”. Seven months ago I called SLA after yet another failed attempt at sobriety. I had just reached the end of hope. What then? I couldn’t do it on my own. I had no idea how.
Two days later, I arrived in Canton, Georgia tired of it all, but just desperate enough to try again.
It has not been easy, in fact I wanted to walk away many times, but I found what I had been missing all along…a recovery family that loved me and would never give up, even when I did.
Our staff at Canton has stood behind me supporting every step I’ve taken, asking only one thing from me…Willingness. They gave me all the tools, then simply let me do the work!
For anyone who can’t find sobriety here at SLA, simply put, they just weren’t ready to give up fighting a losing battle.
I have to personally thank my Canton recovery family for all they have done. Everyone, from transportation (Steve, Tristan) and job development (Trevor)to guest services (Matt, Jasmine) and our director John Turk…I thank you for all that you do!”
Regardless of what you are dealing with, counselors are trained and prepared to help you in any way possible. This is just a small sampling of the different life-saving organizations that provide support, someone to listen, and some additional resources to help get through anything. It’s incredible work these organizations do and it wouldn’t be possible without donors and volunteers. A very special Thank You to those people