BUILDING AWARENESS - Rick and Cindy More, who spearheaded the Smiles Thru Lindsey Foundation following the loss of their daughter in 2015, are thankful for the continued and growing support for the organization. Next up in terms of fundraisers is a drive-in movie event planned for August. photo submitted

Smiles Thru Lindsey Foundation planning a drive-in movie fundraiser

Foundation continues to fight misconceptions around depression and mental health

Red Deer’s Rick and Cindy More are grateful for the community’s continued generous support for the Smiles Thru Lindsey Foundation – set up in the wake of the devastating loss of their daughter Lindsey in 2015.

Local residents have been steadfastly supportive of the Foundation, which is geared towards providing financial help to young adults, teens and children dealing with depression. It also provides funds for mental health initiatives and supports.

It’s been a busy year, with St. Joseph High School raising funds and awareness for Smiles Thru Lindsey for their grad service project, plus the recent For the Love of Art event held at Parkland Nurseries.

“For Cindy and I, it’s been two and a half years but this City continues to support Smiles Thru Lindsey and a lot of it is awareness because of what the media do,” he said, adding that community members continue to approach him asking how they can get involved.

Gloria Beck of Parkland Nurseries reached out to Rick as the staff unanimously selected the Foundation as their charity to support during For the Love of Art.

As to the drive-in movie event, Rick said Fresh Air Cinemas had signed on with the Red Deer and District Chamber of Commerce where he works.

“We just started chatting. They’ve held Movies in the Park before with a smaller screen, and they asked if I knew of any charity that they could raise money for. So I went into our story – and she said she was sold. They have this huge jumbo screen – just massive – like the old drive-ins, and they put it up for you.”

The event is slated for Aug. 23rd at Westerner Park.

“They are giving me the parking lot for nothing, and of course (the site) just lends itself to a drive-in with the four gates, so we can get people in that way,” he said.

“The Millennials haven’t experienced it; obviously the Baby Boomers have. So it will be a learning experience for the young and rejuvenation for the others,” he added with a laugh.

Tickets will be available at Tickets Alberta in the coming weeks.

“There will be a $25 parking pass for entry, and that will all go to Smiles Thru Lindsey,” he said, adding that a local car club will be setting up on site that will add richly to that ‘nostalgic’ feel for the evening with 50s and 60s cars to check out.

“People can come early to see that and then the show itself will start at about 9 p.m.

“We will have a concession there, too, with hot dogs, hamburgers, popcorn, pop and pickled eggs. We are also going to order those box trays that you used to put all of your stuff in to take to your car – I want the experience to be like it used to be,” he added.

More details, including what the feature film will be, will be released shortly.

Meanwhile, Rick and Cindy are committed to helping rid society of remaining stigmas that exist in relation to depression and mental illness in general.

“I cry everyday still,” he said, reflecting on his beloved daughter. But he believes things are improving in terms of opening up conversation about these areas.

During a recent talk at St. Joseph High School, he noted how proud and inspired he was of the up-and-coming generation, including those students who embraced the cause as their grad service project.

“It was so enlightening, and I continue to get messages through Facebook that say, ‘You guys are amazing and brave,” he said.

“But I always say it was Lindsey who was brave. So it’s emotional every time,” he said, referring to the range of events and fundraisers that he and Cindy always do their best to attend. It’s also part of honouring their daughter and promoting her legacy. Rick said his daughter was always concerned about how other people were doing.

The Mores don’t want anyone to suffer in silence – and in a sense, that’s what Smiles Thru Lindsey is about. Raising funds, building awareness and reminding those in the community that are fighting depression that they are not alone in their battles.

Sharing their story has also opened doors to have a powerful impact on many lives as well.

“When we open our hearts about Lindsey, there’s a form of trust that happens. You are bleeding out the worst thing that could ever have happened,” he said.

For more about the Smiles Thru Lindsey Foundation, check out their facebook page.

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