By Gabriella Ciaccio
On March 15, Jamie Tworkowski, founder of the organization ‘To Write Love On Her Arms,’ came to KU to speak in Schaeffer Auditorium.
To Write Love On Her Arms (TWLOHA) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to presenting hope and finding help for people who are struggling with depression, addiction, self-injury and suicide.
TWLOHA’s main goal is to encourage, inform, inspire and invest in treatment and recovery for people who need it.
Trorkowski opened the talk by briefly addressing the crowd and talking about his personal struggles with depression. Then, he gave the back story on TWLOHA.
“Some people use pain to deal with pain,” said Tworkowski as he began.” Sorrow is an injury.”
Tworkowski was living in Florida when he met a girl named Renee, who was struggling with depression and addiction. At 19 years old, she attemped suicide. She told Tworkowski her story and they formed a bond almost overnight. Tworkowski and a small group of friends helped Renee admit herself into rehab so she could get the help she needed.
It was Renee’s story that motivated Tworkowski to create TWLOHA.
He never intended to create an organization, but he became so immersed with this movement that he quit his job and focused solely on helping others combat their struggles.
Tworkowski made TWLOHA t-shirts, and his good friend Jon Foreman, the lead singer of the band Switchfoot, wore the shirt on stage while performing at a concert.
After that night, messages of love and support began pouring in on the MySpace page Tworkowski had created for TWLOHA.
“We got to see the best of social media and we got to see the best of people,” said Tworkowski.
Tworkowski solemnly dedicated his talk in Schaeffer Auditorium to Calvin Heyward, a KU senior who died on March 9.
“Jamie Tworkowski evoked many emotions from the crowd, including my own,” said senior Alyssa Fama. “His story was compelling and sent out a great message, not just to Kutztown but around the globe, that your story is important. Our stories are important.”
If you would like to find out more information about TWLOHA, you can visit twloha.com and like the Facebook page at Facebook.com/towriteloveonherarms.