Parents Share Painful Stories in New Blog from Partnership for a Drug Free America

Partnership for a Drug Free America's (PDFA) Parent Partners Kim Manlove and Ginger Katz are the first to share their personal stories through an online peer-to-peer blog. The Partnership parent blogs are personal journals where each parent shares the experience of how drug abuse changed their families’ lives.  By communicating directly—and in their own words—with other parents, Manlove and Katz hope to help prevent other families from having suffering the tragic losses they have each endured. Manlove’s son David abused inhalants and was only 18 years old when he died in an inhalant-related accident; Katz’s 21-year-old son Ian died of a heroin overdose.

These blogs are moving, helpful and make a lasting impact. I congratulate Manlove and Katz for daring to keep the conversation going on what must be very painful events, in order to help others. And it's a great way for PDFA to get the word out directly from those (to those) affected by drug abuse, a very different approach from its more traditional, highly-intermediated strategies.

“When I began the weblog, I suspected it might have a cathartic effect for me, but the reality has far exceeded those expectations,” said Manlove. “…It is an incredible gift, one that allows me to voice my thoughts and memories in a way that gives them wings, and more importantly, may help other families rise above the clouds of despair and sorrow to where there is light and hope.”

“Many parents don't realize that information about drugs that comes from them will have a much greater impact on their kids than information from any other source,” said Joe Keenan, EVP and director of interactive and technology for the Partnership. “These blogs are an excellent place to encourage parents to learn the facts about drugs and talk to their kids, as well as a powerful platform from which to inspire other parents to take up the cause.”

Joe's right on target. No other medium could so poignantly, thoroughly and effectively convey these parents' perspectives. Take a look at Manlove's and Katz's blogs today for inspiration.

While you're at it, review these three recent articles I've written on nonprofit blogs:

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Nancy Schwartz on February 22, 2006 in Blogging for Nonprofits, Nonprofit Communications, Unique Approaches | 3 comments
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  • Thanks for this, goes nicely with March of Dimes Share Your Story – http://netsquared.org/share-1

  • This is very interesting. Consumers Union gathers hundreds of compelling personal stories as part of our campaign strategy (for example at StopHospitalInfections.org)and we’re now creating a system for making them public if people want us to(we’ve already started at http://www.hearusnow.org). But I’ve been concerned that having these folks blog might be more work than they had in mind. How did they identitfy people who would want to blog?

  • I just came across this comment from Kathy Mitchell last year about my blog and she does raise a very good point. I can only speak for myself but I had never done a blog before when I was approached about doing this one by the Partnership for a Drug Free America. They did a nice job of explaining the process and what my responsibilites would be and while I have not in recent months kept the same level of productivity as I did at the beginning it continues to be a rewarding and cathardic exercise for me. My fellow blogger Ginger Katz did fall by the wayside for her own reasons.

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