Lauren Scruggs Kennedy --> The LSK Foundation
I am so honored to introduce you to my sweet friend, Lauren Scruggs Kennedy.
Lauren is such a beautiful soul with such a powerful story of hope and restoration.
"In December 2011, Lauren’s life was forever changed. Her calendar paused, her career path changed, and her platform increased after a night of injury, or what she subconsciously defined at the time as a 'depletion of beauty'. She was sucked into a plane propeller; the blade cut into her brain and the left side of her body, resulting in the loss of her left eye and left hand." -> from http://www.lskfoundation.com/
In 2015, you founded The Lauren Scruggs Kennedy Foundation with Lisa Curlee and Ashley Igo.
Can you tell us a little bit about your story and how LSKF was started?
"I received prosthetic arms about six months after my accident, and I was so grateful because all of the arms were covered by my insurance. At this point, I had not yet met anyone who had lost a limb or anyone who wore a prosthesis, so I thought my coverage story was normal. Shortly after, I started meeting so many girls, and they each would share their story of not being able to afford a good quality prosthesis. I came to realize how rare my story was, and what they were sharing absolutely broke my heart. I had experienced such renewal and wholeness from this physical object that produced another level of healing, and I wanted everyone to have the opportunity to experience that. From that point on, I started praying with the intention of wanting to make that possible. I soon after met my two precious friends, Lisa and Ashley, who both lost their legs and had the same passion as I did, and the process of creating LSKF began. God has been in every single detail. It has been so humbling and powerful to be a part of."
You often talk about how your relationship with the Lord strengthened during the months following your accident. What did He teach you during that time that would be encouraging to other women walking through trials?
"I can’t imagine going through this without Jesus. He was my strength in every moment. My family and friends and such an amazing community wrapped around us, but sometimes that didn’t feel like enough. The Lord was the only one who sustained me + His provisions were so tangible and prayers were answered before my eyes. I felt so encouraged knowing Jesus was with me and that He truly understands suffering. He taught me so much during that time - to take 12 hours at a time, to surround yourself with a community that loves you through the most vulnerable circumstances, to replace lies that swirl in your head with His truth, and to remember that your complete identity is always steady in the Lord."
Bethany Hamilton has become a great friend of yours. Shortly after meeting her the two of you founded a retreat for women with limb loss.
How has her friendship and this community of women made a difference in your life?
"Bethany was the first person I met and talked to who had a similar story of loss. What an absolute life-changing gift her friendship has been! We decided it would be so influential to start an intimate retreat to create a community of girls with limb loss. It has absolutely changed my life! The connection happens so quickly because there is an immediate understanding without having to explain much + the feeling of not feeling alone in this specific journey is transformative. Even though our stories are all different, our loss is so similar. I have developed some of my deepest, life-long friendships during these retreats, and we all live all across the country!"
You were recently able to present your fifth recipient, VerKilya, with a beautiful silicon cosmetic covering for her prosthetic arm. That is so exciting!
You work with ARTech in Dallas to provide these coverings. Can you explain that process + why these cosmetic coverings are so important for these women?
"Yes!! It was such an amazing experience, and V has the most joyful spirit and precious heart. A cosmetic covering is "the skin" covering of a prosthesis. It is the key to making a good quality, realistic looking arm or leg. ARTech is a small family-owned business in Texas who custom paints each limb that they make. They are so deep-hearted and full of wisdom! Prosthetic limbs that are covered differently fall apart so quickly and are “off the shelf,” so they look very unrealistic. Having a beautiful arm or leg gives such a healing confidence!"
How much does a cosmetic covering cost? What if anything does insurance cover?
"A cosmetic covering costs anywhere from $9K-$14K - this is with the ARTech discount. Insurance will occasionally pay for the structure of the prosthesis (underneath the skin) or the most minimal prosthetic arm or leg."
You are so passionate about coming alongside + comforting women. It is truly beautiful.
The Full Heart Co specialty mug (you are not alone) benefiting LSKF was created with this in mind. What feedback and stories have the recipients shared with you?
"I love 2 Corinthians 1:4, where it talks about how the Lord comforts us in our troubles so that we can comfort others, and we pray to bring comfort through LSKF. It has been so humbling and such a joy to hear the impact of having a beautiful prosthesis as well as having a community during the process; a sense of wholeness, a new level of healing, a gift amidst a season of loss. These girls are so inspiring and have the most incredible stories and hearts, and all of them want to help other girls after this experience!"
If you could sum up LSKF in 3 words. What would those be?
"Restoration, community, hope"
So many women want to be more involved with non-profits but they are not sure how. How can they become more involved with LSKF?
"The best ways to be involved right now are to pray and also to give if you feel led. We could not provide without donations!"
10% from each sale of this mug goes directly to The Lauren Scruggs Kennedy Foundation.
Head to the shop (click on the pic) + join me in supporting these amazing women!
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