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Other Parents Like Me

OPLM is an online peer support community designed for caregivers of teens struggling with mental health and/or substance use issues

$17,260
pledged of$200,000 goal
84
36Days Left
Fund it
Campaign Ends on November 6, 2022

Project Description

 

Other Parents Like Me (OPLM) is a membership-based platform with a resource hub and daily online support groups led by parents, for parents of teens and young adults struggling with mental health issues and/or substances.

On left: OPLM logo on dark gray background. On right: Image of woman looking at laptop on table during a support group.

 

THE PROBLEM

We are experiencing a global mental health epidemic.

Anxiety and depression. Substance abuse. Suicidal ideation. Self harm. Adolescents and young adults are in crisis. 

  • Overdose deaths have increased 500% since 1999 among ages 15 - 24 (CDC)
  • Suicide is the 2nd leading cause of death among ages 10 - 34 (NIMH)
  • There was a 31% increase in mental health-related emergency department visits amongst ages 12 -17 (Yard et al., 2021)
  • Anxiety and depression increased by a massive 25%, in the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic (WHO)

As a result, parents are in a state of crisis, too.

A void exists for supporting parents going through this crisis. Other Parents Like Me fills this gap.

Image of the OPLM homepage on a desktop computer, and an example of a support group on a laptop.

 

SOLUTION

Other Parents Like Me (OPLM) lets parents know they are not alone.

This membership-based platform and virtual community is designed to create a safe space with the access and support parents need as they move from crisis to healing.

Group of adults walking hand-in-hand in a field.

 

PREMIER MEMBERSHIP IS $49/MONTH AND INCLUDES:

  • Daily Zoom Support Groups: Parent-led — currently offering 15 support groups per week, with early morning, identity-based, late night, and more
  • Live Speakers & Panels: Featuring renowned authors and leading experts in live and recorded sessions, with a Q&A session for attendees
  • A Resource-rich Hub: Over 1,000 podcasts, articles, apps, books, organizations
  • Glossary: An A to Z of mental health terms and disorders
  • Parent Stories & Blogs: Insights into the journey of parents like you
  • Support Directory: Professionals and organizations in the recovery/wellness space
  • Mentorship Program: Peer Parent mentors better connect you to our community and steer you to the resources and benefits you need

 

PEER PARENTS

Peer Parents are just like our members — parents of teens struggling with mental health issues and/or substances. They facilitate the meetings and are there to support parents on their journey from crisis to healing.

Grid of 12 of OPLM's Peer Parents

 

Father hugging son, both smiling, with a lake behind them.

 

WORDS FROM OUR MEMBERS…

“I feel empowered. I feel like I have done right by my child and or can look at a situation differently because of the perspectives of others.”

“I have been regularly attending meetings for almost 9 months now and…. when I show up to meetings I know for one hour I am surrounded by people who understand, who listen, who care, and it's life-changing. I haven't felt this supported by others in over a decade. OPLM is a sanctuary and I'm grateful beyond words.”

“I have a home.”

“I realize that when my husband and I do the meeting together it has given me a safe space to communicate and share some things with him that I have not...to let go of some of my fears…to be able to lean into the uncomfortable.”

“I just really appreciated hearing from other parents who struggle with depression. It made me feel not alone, valued and heard.”

“The power of connection with parents like me is EVERYTHING.”

 

Image of Casie Fariello and Liz Reitman, the co-founders of OPLM.

 

FOUNDERS

We are two moms determined to make a difference.

We found each other during one of the most challenging times in our lives. While trying to maintain our careers and families, we endured life-altering challenges as we saw our children suffer from anxiety, depression, cutting, substance use disorder, suicidal ideation. Resources were hard to find, treatment options were exorbitant in cost and we lost our sense of community and friendships as we hid behind our shame, fear, and grief.  We are passionate about this space and our connection to OPLM is personal. 

Casie Fariello, our Chief Executive Officer, comes with 26 years experience as flight attendant overseeing training, customer service relations and crisis management. Liz Reitman, our Chief Marketing Officer, is a veteran of branding and marketing and is the founder of an award-winning NYC branding studio established in 1994.

 

MEET THE TEAM

Aren Kurth (they/them)

Researcher

As a remote mental health researcher with Other Parents Like Me (OPLM), I have been enormously grateful for the support, vulnerability, and deep humanity that I have found in this community since I started my position in January of 2022 amidst a global pandemic. It seems a rare thing to encounter a position wherein going to work makes one feel more optimistic about the world, but that is what I have found through my interactions with the Peer Parents and the internal team at OPLM. As a nonbinary and disabled researcher, I did not expect to find such a wonderful team where I feel respected, seen, and heard for what I bring to the table, and I continue to be grateful for the community that OPLM is building. 

_____________________________________________________________________________________

Elizabeth Hajny (she/her)

Lead Designer

OPLM’s mission is something I love being able to support. Having dealt with mental health and addiction issues within my own family my entire life, it’s amazing to see all of the people in our community getting help and support in a welcoming space.

____________________________________________________________________________________

Kaitlin W. (she/her)

Marketing Coordinator

It has been very fulfilling to work at a startup that aligns with my core values. It’s an amazing experience to grow together as a small team and see OPLM take off. The experience that comes with a startup is unparalleled. I find it makes the job even more satisfying being able to support the mental health space and substance use community as that is something my family has struggled with severely.

____________________________________________________________________________________

Kristen Corbi (she/her)

Experts and Partnership Coordinator

Although the majority of my professional life has been spent in front of a classroom of children, I was eager to experience working on the ground level of a woman-owned business. I admire the company's work ethic and mission to create an unmatched peer to peer support platform for parents of children with substance use and mental health struggles. There's not really anything else out there like OPLM and I love the idea that I can help make a positive impact on people's lives by working for this company.

____________________________________________________________________________________

Letitia Caceres (she/her)

Operations Assistant

I enjoy working for OPLM because of the culture of caring and teamwork that is fostered. The Founders make a concerted effort to support each team member – not just business wise but even in the ups and downs of life. 

____________________________________________________________________________________

 

York Ast (he/him)

Membership Ambassador; Peer Parent Meeting facilitator

OPLM provides resources and connections for parents who find themselves struggling with their loved ones, be it due to mental health and/or addiction issues. I wish I had an organization like OPLM available to me when I and my family struggled a few years ago. By far the biggest driver of healing in our recovery was building connections with other parents who understood the struggle. And that is what OPLM provides: connections to find hope, help and healing, which makes me proud to be a part of OPLM.

 

Image of OPLM's Instagram feed/grid.

 

HOW YOU CAN HELP

We are so grateful for any ways that you and your friends can support.

Contribute. By supporting this campaign, you’re helping us connect with more parents and families in need of a community. You are saying we see you and you are not alone.

Share. Spread the word! Whether it’s email, social media, or just word of mouth, your voice will go a long way. Here's a folder with text + images to make it easy to share.

Join. Sign up for OPLM’s Newsletters to receive updates and personal insights from families on this journey. Our newsletters come from a place of vulnerability, strength and include touching stories of parents in the thick of it.

 

Woman smiling, looking at her phone with her laptop open on the table next to her.

 

WHY CROWDFUNDING

Other Parents Like Me is fueled by our community and we want our members to feel as much a part of building OPLM as our team does. 

As a women-owned business, we decided to campaign through iFundWomen, a female-only crowdfunding platform. Given the current challenging economic situation, crowdfunding would be the boost we need during this early growth stage while gaining traction with membership and potential investors.

Collage image of a father hugging his daughter, 2 people supporting each other at a group, a person on a mountain with the sunrise behind them, and a father pushing his son's wheelchair on the beach.

 

HOW YOUR SUPPORT HELPS

We have been bootstrapping for the past year and don’t want cost to be a barrier to anyone looking for help. It takes a village behind the scenes to make our safe community successful and impactful to all on this journey. By contributing, you'll help us: 

  • Add team members. We have run lean for the last year and need to add staff in order to reach out to programs and speakers, continue training our peer parents, maintain our website's integrity, and continue to add to our resource hub. Bringing on new expertise and talents will help us grow exponentially and fill the gaps in order to be successful.
  • Improve the website user experience. As we have been growing, we learn and discover what our members need and want. We want to add functionality to the site and make changes to the platform so our community has a seamless experience.
  • Increase marketing and advertising. In order to continue to get the word out, build brand recognition and trust within the parent community, we will launch an OPLM podcast and elevate our marketing and SEO so we can reach parents in crisis as they search desperately to find a place with resources and support.

 

Image of a group of people with their hands stacked in the center on the beach.

 

THANK YOU. THANK YOU. THANK YOU.

We are so grateful for your support of Other Parents Like Me, for spreading the word about this organization, and for helping bring this vision to life. By contributing to this campaign and sharing it with your friends and family, you are allowing more parents to seek help and heal.

 

Updates

The Campaign FAQs

 

View our Frequently Asked Questions here.

 

Camille Bareham
10/01/2022
OPLM High Five
$100
Lynne Weaver
09/30/2022
OPLM Change Advocate
$250
Meredithe Quinn-Loerts
09/30/2022
Public OPLM Fist Bump
$50
09/29/2022
OPLM High Five
$100
Tanya P
09/29/2022
Founder's Circle
$1,000
Kelly Hyde
09/28/2022
Public OPLM Fist Bump
$50
Carrie M
09/28/2022
Monetary Contribution
$100
Barry R
09/28/2022
OPLM Change Advocate
$250
Hayley Kahn
09/28/2022
OPLM High Five
$100
Alan and Marilyn Ford
09/28/2022
OPLM High Five
$100
Monetary Contribution

Just Because I Care

20 Supporters
Select this reward
25.00 USD
Spiritual OPLM Fist Bump

Thanks for supporting OPLM!

7 Supporters
Select this reward
50.00 USD
Public OPLM Fist Bump

You will receive an OPLM sports towel and we'll give you a shout out on our social media channels.

16 Supporters
Select this reward
100.00 USD
OPLM High Five

You will receive an OPLM baseball cap — dark gray embroidered with the OPLM logo. We'll also give you a shout out on our social media channels!

24 Supporters
Select this reward
250.00 USD
OPLM Change Advocate

You will receive a Gift Certificate for 1 year of the Calm App to jumpstart extra self care.  We will also give you a shout out on our social media channels!

7 Supporters
Select this reward
588.00 USD
OPLM Change Agent

You will receive 1 year free subscription to oplm.com for you or a friend or family member. We will also give you a shout out on our social media channels!

5 Supporters
Select this reward
1,000.00 USD
Founder's Circle

You receive:

  • the OPLM sports towel
  • the OPLM baseball cap
  • 1 year free subscription to oplm.com for you or a friend or family member 

As a thank you for supporting our mission to close the funding gap, we will add your name to a dedicated page on oplm.com.

5 Supporters
Select this reward
2,500.00 USD
OPLM Angel

You will receive:

  • the OPLM sports towel
  • the OPLM baseball cap
  • 2 one-year free subscriptions to oplm.com for you or a friend or family member
  • 3 one-hour parent coaching sessions with Casie who is trained by The Partnership to End Addiction

As a thank you for supporting our mission to close the funding gap, we will add your name to a dedicated page on oplm.com.

0 Supporters
Select this reward
5,000.00 USD
OPLM Unicorn

You will receive the full OPLM bundle! This includes:

  • the OPLM sports towel
  • the OPLM baseball cap
  • Gift Certificate for 1 year of the Calm App
  • 3 one-hour parent coaching sessions with Casie who is trained by The Partnership to End Addiction
  • 5 one-year free subscriptions to oplm.com for you or a friend or family member

As such a big supporter of our mission, we will add your name to the top of a dedicated page on oplm.com.

0 Supporters
Select this reward

Rewards

Monetary Contribution

Just Because I Care

20 Supporters
Select this reward
25.00 USD
Spiritual OPLM Fist Bump

Thanks for supporting OPLM!

7 Supporters
Select this reward
50.00 USD
Public OPLM Fist Bump

You will receive an OPLM sports towel and we'll give you a shout out on our social media channels.

16 Supporters
Select this reward
100.00 USD
OPLM High Five

You will receive an OPLM baseball cap — dark gray embroidered with the OPLM logo. We'll also give you a shout out on our social media channels!

24 Supporters
Select this reward
250.00 USD
OPLM Change Advocate

You will receive a Gift Certificate for 1 year of the Calm App to jumpstart extra self care.  We will also give you a shout out on our social media channels!

7 Supporters
Select this reward
588.00 USD
OPLM Change Agent

You will receive 1 year free subscription to oplm.com for you or a friend or family member. We will also give you a shout out on our social media channels!

5 Supporters
Select this reward
1,000.00 USD
Founder's Circle

You receive:

  • the OPLM sports towel
  • the OPLM baseball cap
  • 1 year free subscription to oplm.com for you or a friend or family member 

As a thank you for supporting our mission to close the funding gap, we will add your name to a dedicated page on oplm.com.

5 Supporters
Select this reward
2,500.00 USD
OPLM Angel

You will receive:

  • the OPLM sports towel
  • the OPLM baseball cap
  • 2 one-year free subscriptions to oplm.com for you or a friend or family member
  • 3 one-hour parent coaching sessions with Casie who is trained by The Partnership to End Addiction

As a thank you for supporting our mission to close the funding gap, we will add your name to a dedicated page on oplm.com.

0 Supporters
Select this reward
5,000.00 USD
OPLM Unicorn

You will receive the full OPLM bundle! This includes:

  • the OPLM sports towel
  • the OPLM baseball cap
  • Gift Certificate for 1 year of the Calm App
  • 3 one-hour parent coaching sessions with Casie who is trained by The Partnership to End Addiction
  • 5 one-year free subscriptions to oplm.com for you or a friend or family member

As such a big supporter of our mission, we will add your name to the top of a dedicated page on oplm.com.

0 Supporters
Select this reward