Impact

Impact2019-01-01T16:58:48+00:00

COMMUNITY IMPACT

The impact of Chris Herren’s message transforms individuals and communities to start the conversation on wellness. He challenges audiences to uncover their “Why” and to look within to create change. In the past year, the Herren team has fielded over 1,700 e-mail messages, letters and posts from students, parents, community members and educators following Chris’s presentations. Below are case studies of the impact at both middle and high schools, personal stories and how Chris and Heather Herren are giving back to others.

COMMUNITY IMPACT

The impact of Chris Herren’s message transforms individuals and communities to start the conversation on wellness. He challenges audiences to uncover their “Why” and to look within to create change. In the past year, the Herren team has fielded over 1,700 e-mail messages, letters and posts from students, parents, community members and educators following Chris’s presentations. Below are case studies of the impact at both middle and high schools, personal stories and how Chris and Heather Herren are giving back to others.

MIDDLE SCHOOL IMPACT

Chris recently spoke to a Middle School and after the assembly an optional, anonymous survey was distributed to analyze the effectiveness of the presentation. The results are inspiring with 93 students answering the survey and the school system responding by looking at ways to support the message further with additional programming and resources.

Survey Results:

  • 38.7% of 8th Graders Responded
  • 6.3% of 7th Graders Responded
  • 90.3% Rated the assembly a 5 (Powerful), 7.5% rated the presentation a 4 and 2.2% a 3.
  • Over 94% reported talking to their friends, parents and extended family about the assembly and message.

Comments Shared Included:

  • “Very powerful message and I know already helped a handful of people.”
  • “It made many people cry or tear up which meant he knew they were feeling it in their hearts.”
  • “This assembly was very emotional and I hope it made other students change their decisions.”
  • “It was an amazing and powerful story.”
  • “I hope that he comes back to share his inspirational story again.”

Chris recently spoke to a Middle School and after the assembly an optional, anonymous survey was distributed to analyze the effectiveness of the presentation. The results are inspiring with 93 students answering the survey and the school system responding by looking at ways to support the message further with additional programming and resources.

Survey Results:

  • 38.7% of 8th Graders Responded
  • 6.3% of 7th Graders Responded
  • 90.3% Rated the assembly a 5 (Powerful), 7.5% rated the presentation a 4 and 2.2% a 3.
  • Over 94% reported talking to their friends, parents and extended family about the assembly and message.

Comments Shared Included:

  • “Very powerful message and I know already helped a handful of people.”
  • “It made many people cry or tear up which meant he knew they were feeling it in their hearts.”
  • “This assembly was very emotional and I hope it made other students change their decisions.”
  • “It was an amazing and powerful story.”
  • “I hope that he comes back to share his inspirational story again.”

HIGH SCHOOL IMPACT

At a high school student assembly Chris shared his message to an audience of 486 students. What happened after the presentation demonstrates the need to bring impactful presentations on the topics of substance use and wellness into schools and communities to start a conversation and provide a safe place to express their emotions.

Survey Results:

  • 12 students left the assembly to get help from counselors.
  • 5 students e-mailed Chris Herren and the student outreach team for assistance; 2 high risk.
  • 387 students wrote reflections.
  • 50 students shared that a family member or friend has a significant substance use problem.
  • 10 students shared that a family member or friend had died due to overdose/complications from substance use disorder.

Since the presentation, the school has adopted a campaign around Chris’s message of being a “Pro At You” and will share student reflections through the year in the hope of keeping the conversation going.

The Student Perspective:
Read excerpts from a Letter to the Editor that a high school senior wrote sharing her thoughts on the impact of the Chris Herren Presentation.

At a high school student assembly Chris shared his message to an audience of 486 students. What happened after the presentation demonstrates the need to bring impactful presentations on the topics of substance use and wellness into schools and communities to start a conversation and provide a safe place to express their emotions.

Survey Results:

  • 12 students left the assembly to get help from counselors.
  • 5 students e-mailed Chris Herren and the student outreach team for assistance; 2 high risk.
  • 387 students wrote reflections.
  • 50 students shared that a family member or friend has a significant substance use problem.
  • 10 students shared that a family member or friend had died due to overdose/complications from substance use disorder.

Since the presentation, the school has adopted a campaign around Chris’s message of being a “Pro At You” and will share student reflections through the year in the hope of keeping the conversation going.

The Student Perspective:
Read excerpts from a Letter to the Editor that a high school senior wrote sharing her thoughts on the impact of the Chris Herren Presentation.

PERSONAL IMPACT

“My name is Mike, I am 21 years old from Mt. Laurel, NJ I remember you came to speak at Lenape High School in November of 2014. I am currently a junior at Stockton University and currently on the Men’s Lacrosse team as well. I just wanted to tell you how thankful I am that I got the privilege to hear you speak and to hear your story is inspiring to me. Both my brother and father are recovering alcoholics and both are involved with AA. Everybody thought that I would follow in their footsteps but after you spoke at our high school. It made one of the biggest impact on my life, that inspires me to make the right decisions especially in college. I will be the first person in my family to graduate from college.

You have inspired to me to be a public speaker because I speak to an elementary school once a year the program is called W.A.T.C.H. it is a program where kids with tough backgrounds and hard upbringings all come together find ways to be better young men in the community and school. I’ve had a few times where I just felt like picking up a bottle of alcohol and drinking away my struggles but I knew the affects and how serious alcoholism really is from looking at my brother and father, I didn’t want to go down that road. I just wanted to tell you how much I appreciated to hear your story.”

– Mike, 21, Mt. Laurel, NJ

“My name is Mike, I am 21 years old from Mt. Laurel, NJ I remember you came to speak at Lenape High School in November of 2014. I am currently a junior at Stockton University and currently on the Men’s Lacrosse team as well. I just wanted to tell you how thankful I am that I got the privilege to hear you speak and to hear your story is inspiring to me. Both my brother and father are recovering alcoholics and both are involved with AA. Everybody thought that I would follow in their footsteps but after you spoke at our high school. It made one of the biggest impact on my life, that inspires me to make the right decisions especially in college. I will be the first person in my family to graduate from college.

You have inspired to me to be a public speaker because I speak to an elementary school once a year the program is called W.A.T.C.H. it is a program where kids with tough backgrounds and hard upbringings all come together find ways to be better young men in the community and school. I’ve had a few times where I just felt like picking up a bottle of alcohol and drinking away my struggles but I knew the affects and how serious alcoholism really is from looking at my brother and father, I didn’t want to go down that road. I just wanted to tell you how much I appreciated to hear your story.” – Mike, 21, Mt. Laurel, NJ

“I was in 8th grade on the night of this life-changing event at Pomperaug, an event to which I could easily relate. When I heard that he was traveling in my area to give his presentation, I was ecstatic and made it a number one priority to attend his event. I remember walking into the gym a couple minutes late and having to sit nearly at the top of the bleachers.

Although I was physically far away from Mr. Herren, the message that he spoke was one I held closely in my heart. There were hundreds of people listening to his engaging words, but it felt as if I was the only one there. Through Mr. Herren’s teachings, I learned that innocent drugs are not very innocent at all; instead, they are gateways to continuously wanting a better high. This is an itch that can never be scratched, and the world is filled with deadly intoxicants; so, although it may be “cool” to fit in with the crowd and moderate, the end results can be alarming.

I learned many great lessons from Mr. Herren, lessons which would carry my angry freshman self through high school and still shape who I am today. Now a freshman in college, I live a completely sober and happy life.”

– Max, 19, Southbury, CT

“I was in 8th grade on the night of this life-changing event at Pomperaug, an event to which I could easily relate. When I heard that he was traveling in my area to give his presentation, I was ecstatic and made it a number one priority to attend his event. I remember walking into the gym a couple minutes late and having to sit nearly at the top of the bleachers.

Although I was physically far away from Mr. Herren, the message that he spoke was one I held closely in my heart. There were hundreds of people listening to his engaging words, but it felt as if I was the only one there. Through Mr. Herren’s teachings, I learned that innocent drugs are not very innocent at all; instead, they are gateways to continuously wanting a better high. This is an itch that can never be scratched, and the world is filled with deadly intoxicants; so, although it may be “cool” to fit in with the crowd and moderate, the end results can be alarming.

I learned many great lessons from Mr. Herren, lessons which would carry my angry freshman self through high school and still shape who I am today. Now a freshman in college, I live a completely sober and happy life.” – Max, 19, Southbury, CT

“I think that your word travels so far through the people that you touch during every speaking engagement that just looking at the filled seats is only a small fraction of the lives you change and touch each time you share your journey, Heather’s journey and your children’s story. My boys heard you speak twice and you have changed their lives and made them better men.”

High School Students Parent

“I have listened to many speakers in my lifetime, and I must say, I cannot recall someone who had such a powerful message. I truly appreciate what you have been through and what you are doing today to impact the lives of thousands of people. I hope that you continue the good work, and that you are blessed with all of the great things life can offer. It is rare to listen to someone who just seems to get it.”

Community Member
“I was in the audience as a baseball player, and though I have spent my entire life sober never having drank or used once, I consider your speech the best I’ve ever heard. What you do is incredible and after hearing you speak it is impossible for one not to reevaluate himself through a new lens.”
Division 1 College Athlete
“My silent son came home and said he was the best speaker he ever heard because he actually “put himself into our shoes” and told the story. He never says anything about anything and this is a direct reflection on the capability of the speaker to reach his audience. Kudos to Chris Herren and the administration for making the decision to put him in front of the students.”
High School Parent
“I know from 46 years on the job, Chris has impacted our kids like no other program I have ever witnessed.”
Teacher

“I would like to just say thank you for having such a great motivational speaker come to the school. My child came home and has been talking about it nonstop. I think our kids go through such trials and tribulations with subjects as drugs and alcohol. I know as far as he is concerned it really was great for him and hit home for him. This is such a tough time in our kids lives and every bit counts. I cannot express how grateful i am to you and your team for arranging this motivational speaker. I hope he touched other kids as he did my my child!”

High School Parent
“Be a hero was the advice former NBA player and Fall River native Chris Herren gave to more than 300 eighth-grade students. The heroes are the kids at parties that have water or soda, he told the group. When you are confronted with drugs or alcohol, be a hero. Hopefully, students will learn a life lesson from his experience and that choices made at this age can have a lifelong affect.”
Jr. High School Administrator

“I think that your word travels so far through the people that you touch during every speaking engagement that just looking at the filled seats is only a small fraction of the lives you change and touch each time you share your journey, Heather’s journey and your children’s story. My boys heard you speak twice and you have changed their lives and made them better men.”

High School Students Parent

“I have listened to many speakers in my lifetime, and I must say, I cannot recall someone who had such a powerful message. I truly appreciate what you have been through and what you are doing today to impact the lives of thousands of people. I hope that you continue the good work, and that you are blessed with all of the great things life can offer. It is rare to listen to someone who just seems to get it.”

Community Member
“I was in the audience as a baseball player, and though I have spent my entire life sober never having drank or used once, I consider your speech the best I’ve ever heard. What you do is incredible and after hearing you speak it is impossible for one not to reevaluate himself through a new lens.”
Division 1 College Athlete
“My silent son came home and said he was the best speaker he ever heard because he actually “put himself into our shoes” and told the story. He never says anything about anything and this is a direct reflection on the capability of the speaker to reach his audience. Kudos to Chris Herren and the administration for making the decision to put him in front of the students.”
High School Parent
“I know from 46 years on the job, Chris has impacted our kids like no other program I have ever witnessed.”
Teacher

“I would like to just say thank you for having such a great motivational speaker come to the school. My child came home and has been talking about it nonstop. I think our kids go through such trials and tribulations with subjects as drugs and alcohol. I know as far as he is concerned it really was great for him and hit home for him. This is such a tough time in our kids lives and every bit counts. I cannot express how grateful i am to you and your team for arranging this motivational speaker. I hope he touched other kids as he did my my child!”

High School Parent
“Be a hero was the advice former NBA player and Fall River native Chris Herren gave to more than 300 eighth-grade students. The heroes are the kids at parties that have water or soda, he told the group. When you are confronted with drugs or alcohol, be a hero. Hopefully, students will learn a life lesson from his experience and that choices made at this age can have a lifelong affect.”
Jr. High School Administrator

Hear From the Community

Testimonials, stories and statements from students, community members and educators drive Chris and our team to keep sharing the message with the hope of reaching just one person. Chris recently said in an interview, “Meaningful interaction with young people happens almost every day, I don’t think we create enough opportunities for kids to talk about tears. ” Our team is here to help start the conversation and walk with you on the journey.

Please convey to Chris the enormous gratitude we have. His appearance today was riveting, powerful and for some kids, heartbreaking. Our counselors’ offices have been filled with kids needing to talk. I have had numerous students request contact information. Chris not only raised awareness, he forced the kids to own the decisions, and explore “why.”

Head of School
“I have been in education for fourteen years now. Subsequently, I have witnessed approximately 60 assemblies and guest speakers’ presentations. Chris’ story and presence is by far the most moving and genuine.”
High School Principal
“Having Chris Herren talk to our student-athletes was both truly inspiring and eye opening. His fall to the depths and rise back to prominence are impactful lessons for student-athletes. If he reached one person in the audience to help them make the right choice, the night was a success.”
College AD
“I told you I was gonna email you when I was 100 days clean of self harm. I never did though. not because I didn’t make it but because it didn’t satisfy me enough. However I’m now 184 days clean. when you talked at our school months ago you definitely left an impact on me.”
High School Student
“Just wanted to say WOW!! That was a powerful message!! He certainly had those kids attention – you could hear a pin drop! As a parent you pray that you never have to face that situation! Thanks for working to get him to the school. I’m sure that all the board members who attended today will agree that it was money well spent!!!”
High School Parent, PTO Member
“I have taught in the Catholic system part and full time for 38 years. I was at your morning presentation with the students. Your talk was riveting and you touched the hearts and minds of many in such a positive way. For that, I want to thank you so much! Every day I am in “the trenches” with the kids and your message was one of affirmation, courage and hope. In a no nonsense way, it mirrors the Christian teaching that I try to impart to my students.”
High School Teacher
“I am the father of a sophomore who attended your presentation. She is a very good kid who tries hard to do the right thing, and usually does. I just wanted you to know that your words were inspirational to her, and made her think. I could never ask for more. You are reaching the right people, and making a difference. Thank you.”
High School Parent

GIVING BACK

Chris has shared his message across the country, inspiring honest discussions on the topics of substance use disorder and the disease of addiction with a focus on wellness. Chris and Heather Herren, have also established two organizations designed to support the Herren Talks platform and provide recovery resources and navigation to all people in need of assistance.

GIVING BACK

Chris has shared his message across the country, inspiring honest discussions on the topics of substance use disorder and the disease of addiction with a focus on wellness. Chris and Heather Herren, have also established two organizations designed to support the Herren Talks platform and provide recovery resources and navigation to all people in need of assistance.

Herren Project, founded in 2011, is a nonprofit organization that focuses on navigating substance use disorder by providing individuals and their families with resources and support along the path to recovery. Programs include recovery navigation and access to treatment, online support groups and family support services, prevention education programs and student outreach.

Herren Wellness, is a health and wellness organization that offers innovative prevention and recovery treatment solutions, with a focus on self-discovery. The centers use a holistic approach that that combines self-help basics with emotional care and support, we help individuals and families lead drug free, fulfilling and productive lives. Each person is met where they are at and treated as an individual.

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