SILVER2022

The Beading Hearts Overdose Loss Support Group

Healing broken hearts one bead at a time

Patchogue, NY   |  https://beadinghearts.org/

Mission

The Beading Hearts Overdose Loss Support Group is a New York based 501 (c) (3) public charity. We are a bereavement support group community of people nationwide that is peer run and professionally supported. We help those to cope with the life-altering effects of the traumatic loss of a love one to substance use or an overdose death. These individuals are struggling with issues such as depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress symptoms, and complicated or traumatic grief reactions. The Beading Hearts members provides personal comfort, hope and support those who are grieving from the death of a son or a daughter, a brother or a sister, grandchild or loved one. We help one another to receive the support so that they can grieve at their own pace.

Notes from the nonprofit

In addition to our public website, The Beading Hearts Overdose Loss Support Group has a member-only privacy protected website as well. Group members are able to view upcoming meetings, volunteer opportunities, calendar of events, etc. The website address for the members only website is: https://beadingheartsli.org/

Ruling year info

2021

President

Linda Nuszen

Vice President

Janet D'Agostino

Main address

PO Box 724

Patchogue, NY 11772 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

84-4601600

NTEE code info

Counseling Support Groups (F60)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Substance Use Disorder has been steadily increasing in the United States for decades and since 1999, the number of drug overdose deaths has more than quadrupled. Drug overdose is now the #1 cause of death in Americans under age 50. Our mission is to provide bereavement support groups to individuals and families struggling in the aftermath of loss to substance use or an overdose death. Participating in a support group with others who have suffered the same kind of loss can be powerful by providing validation, normalcy and hope. Many discover their own strength and resilience even though the pain of their loss will always be with them.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Support Groups

The Beading Hearts Overdose Loss Support Group meets on a weekly basis. Each week the support group meets at a different location on Long Island, NY and by online support meetings to include members living in other states. Furthermore, there is ongoing digital communication with bereaved group members between meetings and special events to keep them informed of the calendar and to support each other when grief is overwhelming.

Memorialization:

Healing for survivors is facilitated by memorialization. It validates the mourning process itself while also paying tribute to the richness of the deceased person’s life. Birthdays and death anniversaries are acknowledged with a special candle lighting. Attendance at special events such as a memorial candle lighting on International Overdose Awareness Day helps bereaved families remember their deceased child, grandchild, sibling or friend in a meaningful way

Using Beads to Heal Broken Hearts:

During the weekly meetings, each group member engages in a therapeutic art activity which is to string together lettered and color beads to create an inspirational message. Commemorating a person, a memory, or a moment in time is very important for those experiencing grief and loss. To create something tangible in honor of what once was is a powerful experience. Art is a great way to commemorate a person and can help individuals continue to feel the presence of that person in their lives. As members engage in the art-making processes, they have been able to voice feelings related to past traumas, decreasing symptoms and increasing their emotional balance and a sense of well-being. Creating beaded art pieces has given them a means to explore, express and validate their own and others’ experiences,

Wellness-Based Activities:

The Beading Hearts sets aside time at each meeting for a wellness-based activity. The death of someone you love can shake the foundation of your existence and affect both mind and body. During a period of grief, one can become preoccupied with thoughts, memories, and images of their loved one, have difficulty accepting the finality of the loss, and experience waves of sadness and yearning.

Chronic stress can lead to a variety of physical and emotional issues, such as depression, trouble sleeping, feelings of anger and bitterness, anxiety, loss of appetite, and general aches and pains. Constant stress can put one at greater risk for a heart attack, stroke and weakened immune system. The mind and body are connected. When one feels healthy physically, they will be better able to cope emotionally. Research is showing very positive effects from wellness-based activities such as meditation.

Population(s) Served
Adults
Families
Grandparents

Our members are provided volunteer opportunities for involvement in outreach activities in order to have a greater impact for change. Such activities are always free of charge to participants and does not include compensation to the volunteers.

Visits to Sober Houses and Correctional Facilities:
The Beading Hearts volunteer at sober houses and correctional facilities. Volunteers meet with residents in a group format to create individualized and personalized beaded items.

Display Booth at Local Events:
The Beading Hearts Overdose Loss Support Group has an informational and display booth at many local events. The display and sales of The Beading Hearts art items are utilized to raise funds and raise awareness as to the unique challenges of grief after a substance-related death.

Speaking Engagements:
During their visits to sober homes, correctional facilities, and attendance at public events, volunteers tell their “story” of the loss of their love one to a drug overdose. Volunteers include in their trauma narratives what they do to cope and survive. They share how they have learned to regulate intense negative emotions such as fear, guilt, shame, anger.

Gardens and Art Project:
A memorial garden provides an inspirational way to pay tribute to loved ones. The Beading Hearts locates public areas in which to plant a memorial garden. Our volunteers create various art pieces for display in the gardens. It is a way for our volunteers to express feelings and ideas.

Visits to BOCES:
BOCES are public organizations that were created by the New York State Legislature to provide shared educational programs and services to school districts. The volunteers of The Beading Hearts Overdose Loss Support Group work with BOCES at-risk students and students with special needs to create inspirational beaded art items.

Population(s) Served
Young adults
Substance abusers
Older adults
Incarcerated people
At-risk youth

Where we work

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of volunteers

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Families, Parents, At-risk youth, Incarcerated people

Related Program

Programs for Member Volunteers

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Due to Covid, our visits to correctional facilities and sober houses had to be curtailed. However, our volunteers were able to virtually meet with inmates.

Number of groups/individuals benefiting from tools/resources/education materials provided

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Families, Parents, Substance abusers, At-risk youth, Incarcerated people

Related Program

Support Groups

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Number of press articles published

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

People with psychosocial disabilities, Substance abusers, Families, Parents

Related Program

Programs for Member Volunteers

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Number of phone calls/inquiries

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Families, Parents, Substance abusers

Related Program

Support Groups

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

Empower anyone who is grieving to help themselves, their families, their friends, their communities and their workplace to better understand grief associated with overdose loss and how it impacts our health, families, and everyday living.

Create a positive community that inspires our members in ways to promote a sense of self-discovery and group connection, encourage members to build relationships with others. The connection that comes with being in a community can act as a support system for members when they require encouragement or help.

To create social change by sharing knowledge with local communities and those around the country

To collaborate with others on coalitions, task forces, committees, grants, to look at the issues, bring about cultural change as needed, educate communities, etc.

To equip those who have been impacted by addiction and overdose to speakup to help others dealing with this progressive disease and healing aids

Building capacity to disseminate information to professionals and the public about the effects of a loss of a love one to substance use or overdose death

Investing in technology to increase access to information, resources, and support

Having member volunteers visit sober homes and correctional facilities to meet with residents in a group format for an activity utilizing expressive art therapy. The art-making process is a way for these individuals to receive support, feel a sense of belonging, and work with imagery to address issues such as self-blame, guilt, disclosure, social stigma and anger. The group format also enables participants to explore issues of trust, empowerment and self-identity through interactions with others with similar histories

Hosting support group meetings and share stories and experiences to learn:
- How grief can impact our health;
- How have others coped with their grief and grief attacks;
- How have others turned their grief into something positive;
- What are the resources available for our type of loss

Engaging in activities that encourage memorializing and integrating loss into life

Sponsoring/Hosting member events

Sponsoring a conference/retreat

We are capable of ongoing efforts in our communities showing people it is okay to talk about depression, mental illness, addiction and the brain changes, relapse, and the deaths. We continue to recognize the healing benefits of talking about these sensitive subjects.

Actively engaged members who are involved in our organization’s activities that have a positive societal impact

Continue participation in International Overdose Awareness Day events

Continue to have a social media presence on Facebook and Instagram

Willing speakers to talk to businesses, schools, houses of worship, and others to provide information on grief associated with overdose loss

Continue to have resources on our website for the bereaved and others supporting the bereaved

Having members engage in therapeutic art activity as a way to commemorate a person and help them continue to feel the presence of that person in their lives

Retaining professional mental health service providers with grief counseling experience to facilitate monthly specific support groups for siblings; those who loss more than one to an overdose; and parents who loss an only child

Capable of providing resources and encouraging people to get together with friends, involved in groups, etc. where they feel others understand and have an open ear; recognizing the ultimate love, knowledge, and power available for true healing

Utilizing virtual meetings, we have increased the number of members including individuals joining us from throughout the U.S.

Created a public website and a website for members only

Our organization has had TV and newspaper coverage providing us an opportunity to raise awareness about the need for overdose grief support

Formed individualized support groups:
- Sibling Group
- Grandparents Group
- Those who have loss more than one to an overdose
- Those who have loss their only child
- Those who found their loved one and are potentially suffering from PTSD

Participated in International Overdose Awareness Day

What's Next?

We will continue to improve in these areas with what we are doing. We will revisit our outcomes on an ongoing basis and make adjustments, adding or deleting certain activities/events as needed

To expand nationwide

To sponsor/host more educational and healing events

Contact licensed mental health professionals trained in grief and traumatic

Continue to perform outreach to the newly bereaved. Through word-of-mouth, we learn of others who have lost a loved one to a drug overdose and send them a personalized beaded art item

It is our goal to bring awareness from every medium possible and this does not exclude documentaries and photos of our activities, projects or programs. By documenting and reporting our efforts we intend to broaden our outreach. These multimedia features will be recorded by our volunteers during the activities and will be available to the public

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve, To understand people's needs and how we can help them achieve their goals

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

    We aim to collect feedback from as many people we serve as possible, We take steps to ensure people feel comfortable being honest with us, We look for patterns in feedback based on people’s interactions with us (e.g., site, frequency of service, etc.), We engage the people who provide feedback in looking for ways we can improve in response, We act on the feedback we receive, We tell the people who gave us feedback how we acted on their feedback

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    We don't have any major challenges to collecting feedback

Financials

The Beading Hearts Overdose Loss Support Group
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

Subscribe

Build relationships with key people who manage and lead nonprofit organizations with GuideStar Pro. Try a low commitment monthly plan today.

  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

Want to see how you can enhance your nonprofit research and unlock more insights? Learn More about GuideStar Pro.

The Beading Hearts Overdose Loss Support Group

Board of directors
as of 03/10/2022
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? No
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? No
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? No

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 3/10/2022

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? Candid partnered with CHANGE Philanthropy on this demographic section.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Female
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

The organization's co-leader identifies as:

No data

Race & ethnicity

No data

Gender identity

No data

Transgender Identity

No data

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability

No data