Empower Our Future with Perfectly Afflicted

Welcome to our GoFundMe page dedicated to ending youth suicide. My name is Chris Hendricks. Read on to find out why this cause means so much to me. 

My Dark Moment

I was diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy at the age of 4. At first I didn’t think much of it. I walked a little different from the other kids. I spent some time in a wheelchair. I had lots of doctors appointments and hospital visits. I knew I was unique, but no one seemed to mind. I felt like I stood out in a good way, so I was different, but I was happy.

When middle school came along, everything changed. I was still different, but suddenly everyone else wasn’t ok with it. My friends began to stare  just a little too long. They would ask me questions like, “what’s wrong with you,” and “why are you so weird.” Many began to avoid me all together to the point where people would literally run away when they saw me coming. Thanks to my CP, I couldn’t catch up. Needless to say, I began to feel very much alone.

In high school I found a great group of friends, but for some reason that feeling of loneliness still remained. On the outside, I would smile big and bright, but on the inside I couldn’t help shake the feeling that something was very wrong with me. The feeling of being different and not being able to take control began to take over. The feeling turned into a voice; a voice that said, “you don’t belong here.” As that voice got louder and louder, I felt smaller and smaller, until one day, as a junior in high school, I realized two things. First, I have CP and there’s nothing I can do about it. Second, my CP made me too different for the world to handle.

Then I started staring too. Only I was staring into my mother’s medicine cabinet thinking, “If I went through with it, would anyone even care.”

My Turning Point

For some reason, instead of reaching for some random pill bottle, I went to the living room and found my parent’s stereo along with their CD collection. I grabbed a Fleetwood Mac album “Rumors” out of the drawer and listened to it all the way though. That album saved my life. From then on, I knew that I should stay, and that music would be a part of my healing forever.

My Future

I went on to become a professional recording artist, and speaker dedicated to showing other people the best version of themselves. Thanks to some positive life choices, a sense of purpose, and renewed belief in myself, I’ve been able to live on doing what I love, finding acceptance and finding fulfillment in my greatest gift, fatherhood.

My dark moment somehow found a light at the end of the tunnel, but it could have just as easily went the other way. That’s why, 4 years ago, I cofounded an organization called Perfectly Afflicted with my good friend, Jeff Lawson. He’s a graphic designer, and the father of two teenagers. Both of us have a passion for saving lives through the hardship of personal experience.

Our Mission

Perfectly Afflicted is a charity organization dedicated to ending youth suicide. We put on entertaining and engaging school assemblies both locally and beyond focusing on youth empowerment, and what it takes to create a genuine, meaningful, and long lasting connections in today’s world of social isolation and media obsession. Jeff uses his personal story of overcoming intellectual challenges, while I focus on overcoming physical ones. Jeff uses his talents of storytelling and graphic design to grow our brand, I use my ultimate lifesaver, music.

In addition to speaking at school assemblies, we also design positive message t-shirts, run school fundraising programs, and do wish-fulfillment projects. These efforts put money back into the school system, and create a sense of community between the students, teachers, and administration.

If isolation is the cause of youth suicide, connection is the cure. Perfectly Afflicted creates that link one school, one story, one student at a time.

We’ve helped so many young people over the last 4 years feel accepted and loved. We’ve shared music, laughter, and even a few tears, but it’s time we take our efforts to the next level. If we really want to make an impact, we need your help.

Where Funds Go

Every young person needs to know they have value, but not every school can afford to cover the cost of an assembly. We do everything on a donation basis, but some schools can’t afford even the smallest amount of funding towards our expenses. Your contribution will help us grow in the following ways.

Travel Expenses - Distance shouldn’t keep young people from hearing messages of hope. Although we strive to be frugal, travel is an unavoidable expense. 

Digital Overhead - A digital presence is important not only for our organization, but so young people can stay connected to us beyond our presentations. We want our impact to be ongoing. We also want to expose young people to other crisis intervention outlets that may help them on their journey (crisis hotlines, counseling services).   

Wish Fulfillment- A new guitar for a young musician, a new basketball hoop for a young athlete, a new computer for the next Bill Gates – your help means a young person can dream big instead of feeling small.

Marketing Expenses  - If people don't know we exist, we can't help.  This is where marketing comes in. The effective use of  videography, facebook advertising, and print collateral are essential to the growth of our Perfectly Afflicted family.

Bridging the Gap

With your help, this GoFundMe campaign is just the beginning. After years of hard work, Perfectly Afflicted is on the verge of being a 501-C3. Our articles have been accepted by the state, and we’re on the verge of federal acceptance pending our final review. This GoFundMe campaign will help us supplement some of our costs and expand our reach in the meantime and beyond.

Putting it All Together

Our presentations are tailored for everyone from Kindergarten up through Colleges, Universities and beyond. We have programs designed for every age group in education, including teachers and administrators. We won regional college program of the year in 2017, and even have a first hand account of saving someone’s life thanks to a high school assembly presentation in Seattle. We’re thankful for the impact and support so far, but we’ve got a long way to go.

Thank You

Thank you for taking the time to visit our GoFundMe page, and (hopefully) contribute. Your help, means hope for anyone who has ever felt alone. Your help, means future generations have a future to believe in. Your help, means another life matters, and maybe, another life saved. We look forward to seeing your comments, and hope to see you at an event real soon.

Sincerely,

Chris Hendricks, and Jeff Lawson

Founders, Perfectly Afflicted LLC
  • Rose Hawley-Perry 
    • $100 
    • 8 mos
  • Robert A Dickson 
    • $100 
    • 8 mos
  • Kristen Semanchik 
    • $50 
    • 8 mos
  • Cynthia Smith 
    • $50 
    • 9 mos
  • Jennifer Schultze 
    • $50 
    • 9 mos
See all

Organizer and beneficiary

Chris Hendricks 
Organizer
Wake Forest, NC
Jeff Lawson 
Beneficiary
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