This giving story comes from our #MyGivingStory contest. You can share your story and your chosen nonprofit organization could win a $10,000 grant, or another prize. Visit the contest gallery for inspiration and to vote for your favorites. This story comes from Nicole, who founded Spreading The Love, an organization to fight the stigma that surrounds mental illness and suicide:
On August 25, 2013 I tried to end my life. I was 17 years old.
Two months later, I decided to create an anonymous Twitter account to help me cope. As I started to connect with others who were going through similar problems as I was, I quickly started to realize that not only was I not the only one struggling with these issues, but that there was an enormous lack of support for these people due to the stigma that heavily surrounds mental illness and suicide. I saw firsthand the hope that these people so desperately needed like I had once needed.
For the past three years, I have worked to raise awareness as well as fight the stigma that undeniably surrounds mental illness. Last April, my movement became a 501c3 nonprofit and this past summer, my page hit more than 100,000 supporters.
My current project consists of developing an app that will provide support for individuals struggling with mental illness and suicidal thoughts. Being in charge of my own nonprofit on top of being a student-athlete in college is no easy task, but it’s my passion. I have sacrificed countless hours toward making a difference in this world and now I’m reaching out to you to help me make my dream of developing this app a reality. Please place a vote for my nonprofit, Spreading The Love. Thank you.