The Z-Cares Initiative is a nonprofit dedicated to supporting our youth and shedding the stigma associated with mental health. Our teams work tirelessly every day to develop and deliver programs that will help our youth talk about and cope with their mental health.
Our mission is to create pro-active communities who; Enable teens who suffer from anxiety to reach out for help and resources and Enable community members to reach in with resources and support. Z-Cares strives to end the stigma associated with mental health while creating a shared understanding among teens and adults it is ‘ok to not be ok.’
Z-Cares will accomplish this mission through partnerships with schools, youth clubs and other youth organizations to encourage a continued conversation about anxiety.
Our Board of Directors ensures that the Z-Cares Initiative makes significant and steady progress in its mission.
Zachary Nimmo is the inspiration of the Z-Cares Initiative. We are dedicated to changing lives in Z's honor
The Z-Cares initiative has been featured in local and national news stories.
"In reflecting on my role in Z-Cares Foundation and why I want to be involved in something this special. In October of 2018 our world would shift forever and as a family we needed to decide a new direction. Zachary was such a special person and we knew we had to honor him in a very special way. Z-Cares allows us to help others in his honor. He was the one who quickly stood up to a bully for a friend, so we are doing to same in his name. Anxiety is now the bully and together we stand up. I am proud of this organization and I think he would be too."
"When asked WHY I do what I do with Z-Cares, I always answer the same - one can curl up in a ball and do nothing or one can keep the sunshine alive by making sure we learn to deal with the dark shadows that pop up in everyone's life and learn to TALK about them. This is what Z-Cares is all about - starting and keeping the conversation about mental health going and getting people to realize mental health is as important as physical health and we need to treat it that way!"
"A lot of people ask me why i’m involved in a foundation around mental health. My answer is simple, because of my brother Zachary. The life that he lived helping others empowers me everyday to spread the message about how important mental health is. No one should live with the weight that anxiety and depression puts upon you. It's our mission at Z-Cares to show people it’s simply okay not to be okay. I am beyond proud and passionate to help break the stigma around mental health. Mental health is beyond important to our overall well being and not enough people believe this yet.
"I joined Z-Cares to help families in their journey as they struggle with mental health. Mental Health awareness is important to me and my family. I look to share the message to be positive, stay strong and things can get better."
"This cause is important to me because we all struggle at one time or another. We need to talk about it. There should be a perception of strength to ask for help or to speak up. That is change I want to help make."
Z-Cares Foundation is in honor of Zachary Nimmo. The Nimmo Family, Zachary’s Mom, Dad and Sister Samantha along with their extended family and amazing friends created Z-Cares Foundation in response to the outpouring of love and affection for Zachary during, and after his life. Z-Cares is a non-profit foundation with the goal of keeping Zachary’s memory alive and generating the funding necessary to support programs that will help remove the stigma of anxiety and mental illness.
Imagine, you get a common cold, it's no big deal. Your cold gets worse, you now have pneumonia, what do you do? Of course you go to the doctor. Why do we treat anxiety different? You experience mild anxiety due to an upcoming test, it's no big deal. Your anxiety gets worse, you are now isolated in your room and withdrawn from your friends, what do you do. Too often we do nothing and say nothing. Everyone has anxiety, don’t let it reach dangerous levels. Anxiety isn’t cool, but talking about it is!
Zachary had a zest for life, he was a son, a brother, a nephew, a cousin, a grandson, a teammate and most importantly, a friend. He was liked by everyone and always put others needs ahead of his own. Who was Zachary? Zachary would stand up to bullies who were picking on a friend. That is who Zachary was. If he knocked down an opponent on the sports field, he would help him up. That is who Zachary was. He would torment his sister until they both laughed about it. That is who Zachary was. Zachary was known by his friends as a ‘Hybrid’; He was an athlete, excelling in lacrosse and soccer and he was a self proclaimed ‘geek’, loving fishing, gaming and comics. That is who Zachary was. We can all learn from how Zachary lived.
What was not known was the severity of Zachary’s anxiety. Without an understanding of anxiety, Zachary was referred to as shy; It was anxiety. Experiencing teen hormones; It was anxiety. He began to withdraw from his friends; it was anxiety He stopped participating in team sports; It was anxiety. He spent most of his time alone; It was anxiety. He was seeking medical and psychological help, but it was too late.
In Zachary’s honor, Z-Cares Foundation will start the conversation about anxiety and keep it going. If you feel you are experiencing anxiety, say something; if you see a friend experiencing anxiety, say something, don’t let a minor anxiety issue become something dangerous, say something.
We are all in this together and no one fights alone LET'S TALK ABOUT IT!