In a world where you can be anything,
be kind.

About Our Foundation

McKenna’s Rae of Hope Foundation was founded in 2017 after McKenna Rae Johnson died by suicide. This event was a shock to the community. It became evident to McKenna’s family and close friends that this issue needed to be addressed, as McKenna was the 3rd death by suicide in the Kearney High School in a ten month time frame. Most people know the facts surrounding suicide and they are staggering. The mission of McKenna’s Rae of Hope Foundation is to prevent suicide by fostering awareness, resilience and social change. We strive to do this by holding events that teach others to be kinder, recognize the signs of mental illness or struggle, open up conversations and make our world a little more hopeful.

We strive to:

  • Promote kindness.
  • Create social change by raising awareness & increasing knowledge.
  • Build resilience and decrease the stigma associated with mental illness.
  • Increase access to mental health resources and services.
  • Remove financial burdens associated with mental health care.
  • Support existing and new community organizations and programs .

We fundraise continuously and through donations. We participate with other agencies like the Central NE LOSS team, Buffalo County Community Partners, and Hope & Healing Coalition to sponsor AFSP Out of the Darkness Walk. We coordinate motivational speakers for local schools, organizations, and events that focus on mental health topics or topics to build resiliency. We attend, promote, and provide informational materials at a number of community events. We participate with other local mental health providers/organizations to assure available services and information is up to date and aligns with best practice guidelines. We provide free mental health first aid training sessions. We have provided $20,000 of the funding for the #BEKind program in Kearney Public schools and have awarded over $20,000 in scholarship funds to recipients who display HOPE (helping other people every day) and for those planning a career in the mental health field.

We would like to someday collaborate with local agencies on community needs including a possible mental health crisis center. We really just want everyone to know that it is okay not to be okay and there are people to listen and help. Thank you for supporting our foundation – MCKENNA’S RAE OF HOPE!

The Foundation is committed to removing financial burdens for students in the area that need access to professional counseling services. Check with your school counselors for more information about applying for assistance with these needs.

- You Are Not Alone -

Contact Us

phone: Todd Schirmer, 308.627.3033
address: P.O. Box 1833, Kearney, NE 68848

Be kind for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle

- Plato -

Are you in crisis? Click here for help! #BeKind  •  #BeKindInKearney  •  #RaeOfHope  •  #BeTheChange  •  #86TheStigma
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