The Reginald & Paul Sewell Foundation
The Reginald & Paul Sewell Foundation, founded in 2016, is an organization geared towards raising awareness regarding mental health and suicide prevention in EVERY community. The need for behavioral health services unfortunately is greater in minority communities.
The Foundation was founded by Vikki Webster after the suicide of her 22 year old brother brother Reginald Sewell in January 2016. The name was changed in January 2018 after the suicide of another brother, 21 year old Paul Sewell.
The mission for the Foundation is to assist in detecting behavioral health issues that sometimes lead to suicide to prevent the tragedy our family had to endure after Reggie and Paul’s suicides.
The goal is to encourage individuals to seek assistance regarding mental/behavioral health issues and to not feel the shame due to the stigma associated with these disorders.
Some examples of how the Foundation has raised awareness and continues to do so has been through symposiums where professional clinicians speak on different disorders, diagnosis and treatment. We also provide venues where actual individuals suffering can feel safe enough to share their struggle and we provide onsite resources to immediately link them with behavioral health services. We have partnered with professionals who are able to provide data and statistics regarding suicide.
Since October 2016 the Foundation has raised close to $7000 towards American Foundation for Suicide Prevention soliciting donations for AFSP’s Out of the Darkness Walk. A walk held annually in several cities throughout the US where people come together to walk in an attempt to raise awareness. The Reginald & Paul Sewell Foundation has had a strong team presence with Paul Sewell being a team co-captain.
A little background on the namesakes if the Foundation. Paul was a very intelligent, charming and gifted young man. He was an outstanding student and athlete excelling in many things he pursued. Paul decided to join the US Army in 2015 after graduating high school. He faced a few challenges during basic training but nothing could prepare him for the call he received that January morning in 2016 informing him that his brother Reggie had committed suicide.
Paul was home for the service and it was then I noticed a difference in his mental state. He returned to finish over a year in the Army but had to make a decision to request a medical discharge due to PTSD from Reggie’s death.
Paul was an emotional manipulator...he only showed you what he wanted you to see. On the outside he was this awesome outgoing handsome funny and helpful young man. In the inside he struggled daily with his mental illnesses that ultimately overcame him and he too took his life. Paul sought and had been in and out of professional counseling for his diagnosis.
Paul was a champion and advocate for the Foundation speaking at symposiums sharing his story in an attempt to help someone in the audience. He encouraged me to continue with my mission because it’s important work that will help those in need.
Reginald “Reggie” was an intelligent handsome and helpful young man. He too played sports but decided to stay local for college after high school graduation. He was a typical young man...working and enjoying life. His reason for taking his life is still uncertain though our family has come to a conclusion that we’ve accepted. His death bolted me into trying to reach individuals suffering and to let them know it is ok to NOT be ok and to seek help.
The suicide of these brothers...these young men have left our family and close friends with an emotional void that cannot be described. For that reason it is important to continue this mission in Reggie and Paul’s honor to be a voice and resource for individuals suffering💚💛
Please check our website for upcoming events, projects we’re working on, links to resources, partnerships and ways to donate & get involved!
The Reginald & Paul Sewell Foundation