A Dallas man who lost his son to a heroin overdose is on a mission to help artists and musicians who struggle with addiction, depression, suicidal thoughts and mental health issues.
Jon Daniel is spending 24 hours eating at 48 taquerias for one good cause. He is raising money and awareness for Dallas-based Foundation 45.
“Foundation 45 provides free support groups three nights a week in Deep Ellum and also in the Bishop Arts District as well,” Dr. Peter Thomas of Foundation 45 explained. “[There are] support groups to help local artists, musicians, people within the counter culture struggling with depression, suicide, anxiety and also addiction.”
Daniel’s son was a local musician before his overdose which lends to his interest in helping Foundation 45.
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“My son worked at Bomb Factory and was a musician,” Daniel said. “This is a community of artists and people in the hospitality business and other creative [people] that are the backbone of Deep Ellum that have been chronically undeserved with mental health and addiction treatment.”
Foundation45 was created when 14 Deep Ellum musicians and artists committed suicide in the span of just a few years. Organizers knew that something had to be done to help this corner or Dallas culture that was struggling with significant personal issues.
“When they are afflicted by something like depression, anxiety and addiction, they tend to be heavily influenced and heavily impacted by that –maybe even more so than the general population,” Thomas explained. “Creative people are generally very emotionally driven people.”
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While the services of the group are available to anyone needing help; there is specific outreach for locals working in the arts.
“I think artists and musicians are kind of a pretty unique breed and so we don’t generally gravitate to more clinical mental health settings so Foundation 45 has a little more of an edge to it,” Thomas said.
There is a certain edge to eating tacos for 24 hours. Daniel knows it will garner a lot of attention. He hopes that attention translates to support for those who struggle with addiction and depression and inspires those in the middle of the struggle to seek help.