Bret's plea for the NAMI walks... and some pictures in the middle

About 7 years ago I was fighting a bought of depression. My grades in school fell, I lost intrest in most everything, and felt awful about who I was. I had friends, mission comanions and family members with mental illness issues, but it was hard for me to admit that I needed help myself. After waiting too long, and with some encouragment from my family, I finally asked for some help. I wish I could have overcome the stigma of seeking help for my problem earlier.

Just yesterday I was asked to walk in a fundrasier for a group that is helping to fight the stigma of mental illness. Arti, my little sister, used to intern/work for NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness) and has kept some ties with the group and the cause.

I am supposed to tell you everything in a form letter that I am attaching, but the most important thing I need to tell you is that I am well short of my NAMI fundraising goal of $100 (I've only had one day). If you can spare $5 here is where you can donate: I can turn donations in the morning of, so if you want to pass me a contribution in person that is okay too, I'll come by and get it (my cell 773-3521).

The organization is very flat with no frills, I don't even get a t-shirt for walking, all the money goes to this important cause. You can check it out here: Ohh and if you don't donate now, remember it soon will be Friends of Scouting time so save up.


Here are the promised pictures, with captions.

Here is the attached letter from NAMI!

Dear Friend,

I am writing you today to tell you about an upcoming event that I am participating in that is both very important and very exciting to me. It is NAMIWalks for the Mind of America, NAMI’s signature walkathon event that is being held in Salt Lake City, UT at Spring Mobile Ballpark (was Franklin Covey Field) on September 26, 2009.

I would like to ask you to come and walk with me or to donate to support my participation in this great event. Visit my personal walker page to sign up: It features a link to my team's page where you can see who else is walking with me. There is also a link so you can donate directly to me online. Donating online is fast and secure, and I'll get immediate notification via e-mail of your donation.

NAMI, the National Alliance on Mental Illness, is the largest education, support and advocacy organization that serves the needs of all those whose lives are touched by these illnesses. This includes persons with mental illness, their families, friends, employers, the law enforcement community and policy makers. The NAMI organization is composed of approximately 1100 local affiliates, 50 state offices and a national office.

The goals of the NAMIWalks program are: to fight the stigma that surrounds mental illness, to build awareness of the fact that the mental health system in this country needs to be improved, and to raise funds for NAMI so that they can continue their mission.

NAMI is a 501(c)3 charity and any donation you make to support my participation in this event is tax deductible. NAMI has been rated by Worth magazine as among the top 100 charities "most likely to save the world" and has been given an "A" rating by The American Institute of Philanthropy for efficient and effective use of charitable dollars.

Thank you in advance for your support.


Bret Olsen


Arti said...

Bret, you're my hero! Plus you're kicking my butt in donations. Thank you. Really.

Amber said...

Hey! I want to be able to help, but all I really have right now is cash. If I see you before that morning, (maybe at grandmas?) I can give you some. :) Love you!