About Hope Made Strong
Hope Made Strong is an organization dedicated to equipping leaders with the mental health resources needed to create resilient individuals and churches with knowledgeable and confident leadership.
Approximately, 43.8 million people per year experience some kind of mental health concern. Mental illness is not biased and can affect anyone—our neighbors, our friends and even the person you sit beside in church. However, 49% of pastors say they rarely (if ever) speak to their congregation about mental health.
Our churches need to be equipped with the information and tools necessary to properly address the complexities of mental illness. The need is great, but there are very few reputable resources available to pastors that are both effective and reflective of their faith.
The Church has a central role to play in promoting mental wellness and hope.
Hope Made Strong offers online learning and in-person presentations that create conversations leading to hope, strength, and resilience in leadership.
By equipping staff and volunteer leaders with practical, scripturally-based strategies that align with proven results in the mental health industry, Hope Made Strong empowers the church to effectively reach and support those who struggle with mental health.
Laura Howe is a mental health clinician and community development strategist for churches that want to care for their communities without burning out. She supports local church leaders to overcome and prevent burnout, create effective and sustainable care ministries and be a beacon of hope for their community.
Joy Aliba Edumu
Joy Aliba Edumu is a dedicated and experienced virtual assistant, specializing in providing top-notch administrative support, podcast management, and customer service. Living in Uganda, but supporting those all around the world Joy is exceptional at connecting virtually. When she isn’t on her laptop providing support to her clients, Joy loves to experience the thrill of travel and experience new cultures.
Rev. Rebecca Bailey
Rev. Rebecca Bailey is a clinical counselor and recovery ministry leader in Nashville Tennesse. She previously served on a pastoral staff team and led preschool, connection, and recovery ministries for over 8.5 years. Rebecca is passionate about helping “The Church” create systems of care and support for all people, but especially those working on their mental health, trauma, and chemical dependency recoveries. Healthy church people create churches of healing and grace!
More About Our Founder
My Name is Laura
I’m a registered Social Worker with the College of Social Workers of Ontario. I’m also a Certified Associate of Project Management and a member of the Project Management Institute.
Throughout my career, I have invested in some valuable training in cognitive behavior therapy, trauma-informed care, brief narrative therapy, anger solutions, life skills coaching, applied suicide interventions skills, mental health first aid, and an addictions certificate from Laurier University.
For over 13 years I worked for a non-profit mental health organization specializing in adult mental health and addictions. During my tenure, I worked as a frontline social worker offering therapy, advocacy, and addictions counseling to some of the most marginalized, ill and incredible people in the community.
I also had the honor to serve as a team leader and project lead during some strategic organizational transitions.
Although I was doing incredible and rewarding work, I was growing restless knowing God had something different planned for my life. I tried a few other paths in search of my calling, but nothing seemed to fit. God had different plans for me.
In 2018, God downloaded Hope Made Strong into my heart and the work of bringing practical mental health resources to the church began.
I have always felt an underlying frustration both in my career and at church. I knew the hope of Christ was the only way for people to be truly free, but I was not able to share this information at work or in a professional capacity.
At church, I experienced frustration when the needs of the community were not reflected in our services, programs or messaging.
After a number of years wrestling with this friction. God spoke to me,
“You are a bridge between the church and the community. There will always be a tension, so just get used to it!”
I was called to bring the message of hope to my community and equip the church to meet the needs of our communities.
Let's Get Personal
I’m a mom of two amazing girls! They keep me busy with endless activities, constant snuggles and entertaining end of day chats. Aaron, my incredible husband, and partner in crime is a gift from God and is a steady ever patient man keeping my feet on the ground.
I am an avid believer in volunteering, as I know that sharing your gifts within the community is one of the best ways to utilize your talents.
I’m a proud Girl Gang member, and I’ve been incredibly blessed to stay connected with the same group of friends since high school (and that was before social media, so it’s quite the feat!). What a blessing it’s been to have friends who let me be vulnerable, honest and do not care that I snort when I laugh!
I love adventure! In fact, I would hike all day if I could. Our family of four frequently goes camping during the summer.
In general, I live by the motto “Always travel with snacks, because you never know when an adventure will begin”.
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