FFDA Receives Funding from The Starbucks Foundation Neighborhood Grants Program

Date Posted

April 10, 2023


FFDA Staff


Starbucks Cup on Table

Families for Depression Awareness (FFDA) was recently selected to receive a $1,000 grant as part of The Starbucks Foundation Neighborhood Grants program. Families for Depression Awareness was selected from more than 20,000 nominations in the U.S. and Canada in recognition of our numerous contributions to mental health awareness and training in MetroWest Boston and beyond.

The Starbucks Foundation Neighborhood Grants

“We show family caregivers that they are not alone,” said Valerie Cordero, Co-Executive Director of Families for Depression Awareness. “This award is a wonderful validation of the quality and impact of our work supporting families affected by depression or bipolar disorder. Through the Starbucks Foundation’s gift, we can reach more people with our programs and message of hope.”

Families for Depression Awareness (FFDA) was founded in 2001 by Julie Totten. After losing her brother to suicide in 1990 and subsequently helping her father access treatment for depression, Julie wanted to help other families and caregivers of people living with mood disorders.

FFDA was one of the first organizations to share the real-life stories of people living with depression or bipolar disorder online, helping to reduce the stigma around these mental health conditions. Today, the organization provides webinars, workshops, and other resources to help caregivers better understand how to support their loved ones. This approach is shown to help those living with depression access care sooner and ultimately, reduce the number of suicides.

“A Full-Circle Moment”

FFDA Programs Manager Arielle Cohen enjoyed a “full-circle moment” when she learned that Families for Depression Awareness had been selected as a Neighborhood Grants recipient. “My first job was at Starbucks when I was 16,” says Cohen. “One of my regulars was a social worker who frequently shared her experiences with me. This inspired me to pursue a career in social work and join Families for Depression Awareness. I am honored that Starbucks supports our mission to educate caregivers, end stigma, and prevent suicides.”

Neighborhood Grants strengthen longstanding and newly established community connections that Starbucks partners (employees) nurture and build as community champions. Through these and other grants, The Starbucks Foundation transforms lives across the globe by increasing community resilience and prosperity and uplifting communities affected by disasters.

  • Learn more about the Neighborhood Grants program at Starbucks Stories.
  • Learn more about what we do at Families for Depression Awareness.