At MOTIF we work with many amazing companies and individuals who are doing great things in the business world and as members of the community. This year we’ve started an initiative to provide them with a platform to tell their stories and how we’ve helped them bring their ideas and projects to life.
This is Life is Worth Living.
What is Life is Worth Living?
Life is Worth Living was started to tell a story of four sisters that have been affected by suicide and mental illness.
We lost our older sister, Brianne, to suicide in August of 2004. Brianne was only 19 years old at the time of her passing and should have had many years left to discover what life had to offer. Unfortunately, Brianne spent much of her teen years suffering from a major depressive disorder. At the time we lost Bree, we knew she had struggled with her mental health, but we did not know she felt pain so deeply that she thought that life was no longer worth living. Brianne’s life ended in suicide, not because she wanted to die, but because she could not cope with the pain any longer. Although Brianne’s life ended in August of 2004, her story did not.
Life is Worth Living is a non-profit project dedicated to spreading awareness and decreasing the stigma surrounding mental illness and suicide. Our hopes are to prevent other families from ever having to go through what we did through sharing Brianne’s story. Not only do we hope to bring awareness to suicide, but also to celebrate the beauty of life and remind others what makes life worth living. Our older sister will always live on through us; in our work of trying to prevent further suicide deaths and the way we choose to live our life — a Life Worth Living.
What has been people’s response to what you are doing?
Since starting Life is Worth Living we have had such an amazing and positive response. By sharing our story and being open about what we have been through, people have reached out and shared their own stories. Several people have wanted to get involved whether by volunteering or just buying an item of clothing to support our cause. Everyone who buys a t-shirt ultimately has their own story and reason for buying the tee. Our goal is to create a platform and a conversation starter for mental health. When someone buys a t-shirt and someone asks them about it, not only can they share our story, but maybe their own story and start their road to recovering or seeking help.
Several people have also thanked us for helping bring the topic of suicide out into the open. When we are thanked, we are kind of taken aback and, if anything, thank them for listening and wanting to help us with something we are so passionate about.
Have there been any hurdles you’ve had to overcome in getting LIWL going?
I think with anything in life, there will always be hurdles or stressors, but together the three of us have been able to navigate starting Life is Worth Living by working as a team. Before our website was up and running, we were very busy (on top of our regular jobs) answering emails and messages on social network pages, therefore we really needed to work together. One hurdle would definitely be that we are all living in different cities, therefore making things more difficult, but we make it work. Life is Worth Living is something we have dreamt about doing for a very long time so every experience since starting, whether good or bad, we face with open arms as this is something that is so important to us because we are doing it for our older sister and for those who are struggling.
What are your future plans for the brand?
Our future plans are to continue to create conversation starters through our clothing and in turn donate the proceeds to Canadian mental health initiatives. This will enable the improvement of both the resources required for those who are feeling suicidal and education surrounding suicide and mental illness. Hopefully, through selling our t-shirts and increasing awareness, those who are suffering will be encouraged to reach out for help.
One of our major goals with our brand is to speak publicly about what we have been through and provide awareness and education. We would love to travel to communities and be able to give our apparel away to offer hope and education.
How was your experience working with MOTIF?
Working with Joel and Nathan at MOTIF has been such a positive experience. Since the very beginning, they have supported us in bringing our ideas to life. With the combination of Joel on the business side and Nathan bringing our sketches to a professional level, we could not ask for more.
They have a quick turnaround with affordable prices at a very high level of quality. Joel and Nathan always put in the extra effort to accommodate us in whatever way possible, whether that’s meeting us at the store after hours for an order pick-up or offering us insight into the clothing business. We appreciate having entered into creating our brand with them and look forward to continuing working with them.