From Columbus, with Love
To raise awareness of the devastating effects of drug addiction, one determined young girl is preparing to run from Columbus, Ohio to New York, NY with her story, and her love.
Our family has been devastated by methamphetamine addiction since 2010. Beginning that year, my siblings, my family, and I watched our parents transform from loving, caring, and successful parents into disturbed, violent, and paranoid parents. My older brother and I were in college during this time, and could not support our younger siblings financially. With the financial and emotional support of family members and friends, however, my younger siblings were able to strive towards their goals. Eventually, my younger sister moved to live with her church pastor and best friend. In order to stay in a top-notch school system, my younger brother was taken in by a fellow teacher. Currently, our mother is going through treatment and has high hopes of restoring our family, but the battle is ongoing. Everyone in our family has felt the painful effects of the drug addiction, including mothers, fathers, grandfathers, cousings, aunts, uncles, etc. My siblings and I were fortunate enough to have a supportive network of family and friends to help our family through this time. As we began to reflect on this, we realized how many children who experience these adversities may not have that safety net.
My sister, Jenna, will be graduating high school in June 2015. After she graduates, she is determined to run from Columbus, Ohio, where our brother is working toward a Ph.D. in Materials Science and Engineering, to New York, New York, where I am working toward an M.A. in Forensic Psychology. Jenna is extremely passionate about raising money for this run and raising awareness of the totality of the effects drug use and abuse can have on families. We also look to raise consciousness of the need to change drug enforcement policies to include an integrated family approach to prevent relapse. At the end of this run, we expect to donate the remainder of our proceeds to a non-profit organization that will help families that struggle with similar issues that ours has endured.
Jenna is truly inspirational, and she is determined to push forward and strive toward her goals regardless of her situation. As a cross-country runner, a soccer player, a marching band trumpet player, a student, a daughter, and a sister, she has continuously demonstrated an iron will that I only wish I could display as well. Not all children whose families are ravished by drug additions have the ability to rise above adversity and speak out about their experiences. We will not deny the priveledges we have been given that have lead us to this point. We will not ignore the opportunity we have in making a difference. We will not deny the responsibility in making a decision to do so.
Any contributions toward reaching this goal will be greatly appreciated. From Columbus, with Love also will be capible of being follwed via Twitter, Tumbler, and Facebook. Additionally, a composite video recording of the event will be created and will become available after Summer 2015 on these pages. The run will be tracked and doccumented through GPS and maps of the path chosen to facilitate the run will be released the morning of that specific course. Details of the event will be added as the event proceeds.
Jenna and I would also like to mention that we appreciate all of the sacrifices our family members have made to allow us to have this opportunity. We would not be here without you all.