PRESS RELEASE: After The Impact Fund for Veterans and Legends Introduces First of Its Kind Comprehensive Family Impact Forum
January 10, 2018
After the Impact Fund (ATIF) celebrates its first year of successful service to Military Veterans and Professional Athletes with traumatic injuries by introducing the resource rich, private, Family Impact Forum to provide additional hands-on support for their families.
After The Impact Fund (ATIF) celebrates a successful first year facilitating custom treatment plans and resources for over 190 Veterans and Athletes with traumatic injuries, while providing critical support to their families. Under the leadership of Board Members, Coach Mike Ditka, Brigadier General (US Army ret.) Rich Gross, Green Beret Art Pue, 15 year NFL Veteran Matt Birk and Coach Dan Reeves, the announcement of the Family Impact Forum is a game changer, not only according to ATIF, but according to the families themselves.
The Family Impact Forum, is a private, password protected, online forum for family members of the communities ATIF serves, namely military veterans and professional athletes, specifically to date, NFL, NHL, Jockeys, Rugby, Combat Sports and Extreme Sports professionals with traumatic injuries. To protect the integrity and privacy of the participants, a short application is required before access is granted. Upon entry to the site, family members will find forum topics and listings from general wellness and medical information, to vetted medical partners and service providers, to relevant articles and news stories, to detailed benefits and resources offered specifically to each community. Members then have group discussion forums, in general, as well as community specific, for the purposes of peer support.
“After The Impact Fund’s Family Impact Forum is a Godsend. Family members of retired players and military veterans finally have a safe place to seek resources and support.” says Samantha Pyle-Buono, daughter of former Chicago Bear, Mike Pyle, who was diagnosed post mortem with Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE), a disease now synonymous with pro football, other contact sports and the Military. “To date, there is no other place where family members seeking help can find all of the different services and up-to-date information available to them in one, easy to navigate location. As the daughter of a deceased NFL player, who suffered from CTE for the greater part of my life, I wish I would have had access to something like this, ” emphasizes Pyle-Buono.
Representing the military families, Jill Walsh says, “One of the best things about the Forum is that the military and athletic communities can share and learn from each other, as ATIF has identified more similarities than differences between us.”
“Our goal was to create a place for mothers, wives and daughters, to not only find the resources and benefits they were entitled to in one place, but to have a safe and private forum to share their experiences and concerns,” says Executive Director, Shannon Jordan. “Our family members are often silent sufferers and we wanted to provide not only resources and support for their loved one, but for them personally. We are so appreciative of the research being done regarding CTE, but where we come in is in assisting our communities while they are living to provide help and hope.
Many NFL wives and family members have endorsed ATIF and its new forum. Filmmaker and daughter, Rebecca Carpenter, whose four-star film, “Requiem For A Running Back” highlights the difficulties that families face when dealing with CTE, says “loving somebody who has a degenerative brain disease can be devastating without a support system. I have found solace, leadership and guidance through my confidential ATIF family.”
Widow Sylvia Mackey, known in the NFL community for creating the John Mackey 88 Plan, which provides financial assistance to former players suffering from Dementia, Parkinsons, Alzheimers or ALS, is thrilled with the forum. “What a wonderful and much needed website for all NFL families!!! I receive so many questions about the ‘88 Plan’ myself, and with everybody's need being different, it is impossible for me to answer all. Finally, after years of scrambling for information and not knowing where to turn for help, now I can refer people to ATIF for the right, updated answers and support.”
ATIF already has assembled notable advocates from various contact sports, including Jessica Fraga (Extreme Sports,) Irene Gottlieb (Rugby), and from the NFL: Mary Andrie-Brooks, Trisha Bell, Janet McCoy, Alison Owens, Chie Smith, Stacy Turley, Catherina Watters and Pam Webster to lead the charge.
Outspoken NFL wife and ATIF Advisory Council Member, Liz Nicholson-Sullivan, says, “ATIF has worked hard to build this comprehensive forum, specifically for us, the families. Every time a new person signs on and looks around, they find some benefit or resource they didn’t know existed. ATIF clearly put serious time and effort into this and we are so thankful for it.”Go to Family Impact Forum Member Application to apply.
About After The Impact Fund (ATIF)
After The Impact Fund (ATIF) is a 501c3 non-profit, charitable organization that facilitates custom treatment plans for Veterans and Athletes with traumatic injuries. Whether on the field of play or battlefield, every hit takes a toll and many end their careers suffering in silence. But through our vetted resources, ATIF provides a clear path to healing for these individuals and their families. Bringing these communities together, our solutions remove or reduce symptoms, help mend relationships and provide a renewed sense of purpose. For more information or to get involved please go to www.AfterTheImpactFund.org