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$1,590 of $30,000
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6 donations

This fundraiser ended on 09/30/12

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Friends and family are uniting to raise money for Emily's therapeutic boarding school. Please show your support!

January 2012 brought crashing change to our family. Emily, our teenage daughter, was committed to a psychiatric hospital for her safety. Ten days later following full testing and meetings with various doctors she was diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder.

For the moment she was safe in the hospital, but what about when she returned home? We knew what we faced, for we had already been through so much, her rages of mania and self-injury, searching the streets for her when she took off, not knowing where she was, fearing for her life. We felt so scared that the worst would happen. I knew that Emily was ill and she needed help-- she needed something we could not provide.

I researched and found out that more bipolar children die as a result of the disorder than children with childhood cancers. Her situation was serious and she needed her safety secured. She needed to stabilize on her medication, heal, and learn skills to care for herself. She would be eighteen in a little over a year; now was the time to get her the help she needed while we could make that decision in her behalf.

I felt at a loss. How could we secure the help she needed? Robert and I wanted to place her in a therapeutic boarding school, but we didn't have the means for that. I cried out to God in my prayers. He answered.

We were approached by a few friends and family offering help, enough to get her started, so I started my search to find a therapeutic boarding school. I looked at many. Most were reform-school style--not helpful for Emily since she needs to learn how to make choices to help herself, something she couldn't do if all her decisions were made for her.

We were blessed to find Abundant Life Academy (ALA). I knew that if she could be helped, this was the place for her. Abundant Life Academy provides professional therapeutic and academic staff and 24 hour care. The staff support the students throughout the day to build a positive peer culture. I was very impressed with the students and the staff, a few of whom are former students!

While Emily has formidable challenges, she has many strengths too. ALA can help her stabilize while she builds on her strengths: Emily has a strong presence and will; ALA is a leadership training school. Emily has a heart for animals and people in need; ALA's philosophy is to help a child grow and mature to serve others.

It has been several months since she entered the program, and Emily just entered phase two of the three phase program. She participates in the Equine Therapy program and loves working with the horses, finding it calms her. Emily's medication is stabilizing, she is learning to cope with extreme emotional states without self-harm, she makes good grades, and she is learning life and leadership skills that will serve her--and others-- for a lifetime.

While Emily is doing much better, she still is not ready to be on her own. Emily needs to complete the program to fully develop the skills she needs to care for herself. We have exhausted our financial resources and cannot provide for her to finish. Please consider donating to allow her to complete her program. Enough donations together can make a difference--every donation counts! Thank you :-)

*Abundant Life Academy is a non-profit organization. If you wish to get a tax deduction for your donation, please donate directly to Abundant Life Academy, designating it to Emily M. for her tuition. Call Marcus Hamaker, Director of Operations at (435) 772-5903. Remember to post a note about your donation on this website!

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