What has made Mike’s efforts so successful is his willingness to go where others won’t in order to prevent child abuse and inspire survivors. For Mike, it’s not about talk. It’s about action.
Clothing for SANE Units
When survivors of child sexual abuse go to the hospital for a rape kit examination, their clothes are taken for evidence, leaving them with nothing to wear home but a hospital gown. When Mike heard a story on the news about survivors in Cleveland-area hospitals not having clothes to wear, he decided to do something about it. He negotiated with a local department store to donate clothes to the Cleveland area SANE units on a quarterly basis. Now children who have been through the worst experience of their life can at least have new, well-fitting clothes to wear home. Through Mike’s efforts, over 20,000 individual articles of clothing have been donated.
Outreach to Incarcerated Youth
Mike partnered with the Ohio Department of Youth Services to provide outreach to incarcerated youth in the state’s three juvenile correctional facilities, in addition to county juvenile detention centers. As someone who knows the cycle of abuse, addiction, and incarceration in youth – and how to break that cycle – Mike has a unique ability to connect with and inspire youth who believe that they have no chance at being happy and successful in life. He has also been able to provide insight and training opportunities to corrections staff regarding the impact of child sexual abuse in the lives of the youth in their care.
Running to Help Child Survivors Heal
Mike is a marathoner and ultramarathoner, but he doesn’t just run for the sake of running. Through numerous races, including the 2014 and 2015 Cleveland Marathon, as well as the 2016 and 2017 NorthCoast 24-Hour Endurance Run, Mike raised over $40,000 to help fund counseling services for child survivors of sexual abuse in Cleveland.