A recent recipient, Starr, was able to have her chipped front tooth repaired because of The Ripple Fund. She was selected because of her inspiring story of perseverance and triumph over some of life’s most difficult struggles. Starr represents the ripple effect we refer to with this initiative—she has taken tragedy and turned it into a treasure trove of lessons to help others, while giving freely of her time to help those struggling. The help and support Starr received, she now reinvests into others.

Starr’s story is one of homelessness and struggling with drug addiction and suicidal tendencies. In 2019, she decided she wanted to get clean—and she did, for 11.5 months, until she relapsed on New Year’s Eve 2020 and stabbed herself three times attempting to commit suicide.

Starr felt hopeless and her addiction became rooted in a lack of self-worth and feeling unloved; seeds that were planted in early childhood from the trauma of being molested as a four-year-old and losing her brother at 13. She carried these burdens at an early age and blamed herself for what happened. Starr went from an honor roll student to starting fights and being expelled from school. She tried weed for the first time at 13; at 15 she began drinking alcohol and from ages 16-24 she experimented with psychedelics at raves and festivals, including ecstasy, acid, and mushrooms. At 19 Starr became an exotic dancer, socially trying coke. In her early 20s, when she was experiencing homelessness and train hopping, it went from social fun to a full-blown addiction. Starr began dating a homeless man who was addicted to heroin. During their three-year relationship, she became addicted to heroin and was locked up several times for drug possession. Although Starr left him after he was arrested during a drug bust, their toxic relationship had an on-again, off-again nature. It too was like an addiction, one that came back for a final time nine months after they first broke up. While Starr had endured verbal, physical, and emotional abuse at his hands, she finally left him for good once she discovered he was beating her dog.

After Starr’s attempted suicide and relapse in 2020, she was ready for treatment and enrolled herself in a 60-day recovery program. Despite all the momentum Starr made from treatment, she relapsed again and landed in the hospital. That experience became the motivator to tackle her addiction head on. Since Nov. 19, 2021, Starr has been clean and made tremendous progress in her life. She now visits others going through detox in treatment facilities and shares her story, providing support and resources for their journey. One day in the future, she hopes to become an addictions counselor, helping others who are desperately struggling like she once was.

Are you interested in helping others like Starr? If so, donate to The Ripple Fund here. If you would like to donate your time or medical services, drop us a line.

Starr and Nicole