Respecting Individuals with Care & Kindness, You matter
Respecting Individuals with Care & Kindness, You matter
The Second Annual Ricky, Inc. Virtual Auction has come to an end in spectacular fashion. Due to the compassion and generosity of the many people who opened their hearts to us and participated in the auction either by donating an item, bidding on an item or just making a thoughtful donation; the auction became an overwhelming success.
Everyone that participated enjoyed the daily (sometimes hourly) thrill of checking in on their bid to see the status of the item they bid on. Most people were able to bid on multiple items as our gift list this year was comprised of more than 65 gifts. We have received many compliments on the wide variety of items that were offered and we want to express our sincerest thanks and appreciation to all of those that donated these great auction items. Our donor and sponsor list has grown over the past year and we will strive to continue to keep this successful growth into the coming years.
The Jimmy Tingle comedy show was a phenomenal success and great way to end the auction. Jimmy has been a wonderful friend to us and we cannot express our thanks enough to him for what he has done to support us and help us in our mission to keep Ricky's name and memory alive. His comedy show provided registered auction bidders with lots of laughs and was received very well by all that "zoomed-in".
We far exceeded our original fund-raising goal by reaching approximately 140% of our expected goal. This will enable us to provide even more backpacks to those in crisis and we are anticipating being able to provide a financial sponsorship to someone suffering from substance use disorder that cannot afford to pay for their first month in treatment. It will also allow us to add new organizations to be recipients of our backpack program: increasing the number of persons that will not only receive a backpack and it's valuable resource booklet, but provide a degree of relief from life on the streets and possibly help them realize that they matter. Letting a person in a seemingly hopeless crisis know that someone cares can be a life-saving factor in their decision to seek recovery.
On behalf of the Ricky, Inc. Board of Directors, our Street Outreach Coordinators and all of our families and friends, we extend our most heartfelt thanks and appreciation for your kindness, generosity and your participation in making our fund raising event a huge success. We look forward to the Third Annual Ricky, Inc. Auction in 2022 and hope for your continued support of our organization in the future.
Thank you for helping us to honor and remember our beautiful boy Ricky.
God Bless you for your kindness,
Rich & Bernadette Giacoppo
Just ask Joe McCoy of North Providence, RI. who had the winning bid on our Fresh Caught Lobster auction item during our
Second Annual Ricky, Inc. Virtual Auction 2021.
Joe met up with our generous donor on the day the lobsters were caught in order to make sure they were truly fresh caught lobsters.
The McCoy's cooked all of their prized "catch" and invited family and a few friend's to join them in their good fortune. The menu included lots of butter (of course) and linguine in a clam sauce. They extended an invite to Ricky, Inc. but unfortunately we could not attend due to previous commitments.
On Saturday Sept. 25, 2021 Ricky, Inc. participated in the National Drug Epidemic Awareness Walk Across America in Portland Maine. This was sponsored by the Northeast Chapter of Mother's Against Drugs (M.A.D.)
"A Story Told is a Life Saved"
Participants walked together holding their banners, showing the unity of the organization and supporting the message of "You Never Walk Alone"
MGME news reporter Megan Willgoos featured a lead story on the drug overdose epidemic. To view the Channel 13 news video footage of the event click on the below link, then click on the arrow prompt and also read the attached article below the video
DEAWAA's message is about seeing the good in us all and show's the faces of those lost to the opiate crisis.
There were several banners with hundreds of faces of lost loved one's with the title of "Can You See Me Now". A reference to societies stigma about substance use disorder and it's lack of recognition that it is an illness and not a choice.
Legislative support is badly needed across the country to combat this epidemic.
Ricky, Inc. was well represented in Portland by Virginia, Nicholas, Rich, Bernadette & Roxy Giacoppo seen above displaying the banner used at all events.
This local event was organized by
Susan Lamoureux of the Learn from Lexi Foundation & was held at Ft. Allen Park on the Eastern Prom
Ricky, Inc.'s Board of Director Bernadette Giacoppo works the resource table providing information about treatment, recovery and grief help. Pictured in the foreground is Nick and his big brother Ricky on a beach in Aruba.
Pictured above (L-R)
Lost Sept. 21, 2017
Lost May 11, 2019
These photos were two of the many photos displayed on the Portland Lost Loved One's Blanket that was custom made for this event by Susan Lamoureux and other local Maine families that still endure the pain of losing a loved one to this insidious disease.
On Thursday August 26, 2021 Ricky, Inc. visited AHOPE & PAATHS in Boston. They were distributed 10 draw-string backpacks, snacks and juice boxes each. The staff at both of these Boston Public Health Organizations are so very dedicated to the wonderful work that they do. We thank them for dedication to not only their jobs but to the less fortune souls that they provide services too. They are truly working in the trenches......... great job !
We then went to Andrew House - Boston and delivered some care packages of a couple of dozen pairs of socks, boxes of snacks and boxes of juice boxes for the men in Detox. We also delivered more books to be placed in the Ricky Giacoppo Memorial Reading Room.
On Thursday Sept. 2, 2021 we visited Andrew House in Stoughton and made a delivery of two dozen pairs of socks, boxes of snacks and boxes of juice boxes. We were able to meet with the male clients in detox and speak with them about our organization. A few of them knew Ricky and shared some memories of him with us. It was very emotional but also very helpful as we love to meet people who knew him and have them share their stories with us.
On Sunday Sept. 5, 2021 we brought back some more supplies to Stoughton like books and calendars that some of the residents had requested.
It took a group effort to plant over 9,000 memorial flags on the Foxboro Town Common on Saturday August 21, 2021. This was a somber and much needed awareness event organized by Kris Long
Bernadette Giacoppo planting a neon green 2019 flag in memory of our son Ricky whom we lost on May 11, 2019
Too high a cost !
1,952 beautiful young lives were lost in 2019 due to accidental overdose.
The different colors of the flags represent the different years in which loved ones were lost to overdose. The past several years in Massachusetts we have averaged over 2,000 lives per year.
Rich & Bernadette Giacoppo of Ricky, Inc manned a resource information table on Sunday August 29th. They distributed numerous materials about overdose awareness, where and how to get help if your in crisis.
McKenzie & Kelsey of Manet Community Health Center accepted our invitation to accompany us during this event. They distributed life-saving Narcan to the many people that visited their table
On Friday August 13, 2021 Nicholas & Virginia Giacoppo distributed 11 fully loaded Summer backpacks to the Milestone Recovery Home Team Mobile Outreach in Portland Maine.
Christopher Giacoppo, who is also a Maine Outreach Coordinator, delivered the backpacks to the couple for distribution.
Courtney & Adam are members of the Milestone Recovery Home Team Mobile Outreach program and accepted the backpacks. They then went out the distribute them to the community on behalf of Ricky, Inc. and Milestone
On Monday August 2, 2021 Ricky, Inc delivered 20 backpacks to the Youth On Fire drop-in center in Cambridge. This program is a welcoming and non-judgmental environment for homeless and street-involved youth. The center offers many important resources for high-risk youth including medical care, mental health counseling and many other great programs. Pictured above are Deedi, Bernadette Giacoppo, Catherine and Rich Giacoppo
On Wednesday August 4, 2021 Ricky, Inc. delivered 40 backpacks to the VA Hospital in Jamaica Plain. Most of the backpacks were for the drop-in clinic and others were to be issued to the residential clients in recovery treatment. Picture above are Mary and Evan from Volunteer Services and Rich Giacoppo
We issued our 1,000th backpack at the Waltham House after one and half years of distributing them to many persons suffering from homelessness, substance use disorder, mental illness, Veterans and many support organizations in need.
The past two years have been very difficult times for us and providing some degree of relief and assistance to persons suffering, helps us with our never-ending heartache and pain from the loss of our beautiful, intelligent son Ricky.
We hope and pray that with everyone's continued support that we may be able to someday post our 2,000th backpack.
Bea & Rich Giacoppo
Mum & Dad
On Friday July 23, 2021 Ricky, Inc delivered 12 backpacks to the Waltham House which is the first residential group home specifically designed for LGBTQ youth in New England, and one of only three of its kind in the nation. We were privileged to provide them with our backpacks once again this year, bringing our current total backpack distribution to 1,007.
Pictured on the right standing with the backpacks on the Waltham House Walk Of Pride stairs are Director Latoya Brown, Ricky,Inc Board of Director's Catherine Mahar & Bernadette Giacoppo and President Rich Giacoppo
On Thursday July 15, 2021 Ricky,Inc visited the Phoenix House in Dorchester and delivered 12 backpacks for the mothers in their program, along with 12 bags filled with age-appropriate toys for their children. This is a great mother and child residential facility that reunites families. Pictured above with the backpacks are Program Director Desiree Rivera, Ricky, Inc Director Bernadette Giacoppo and Assistant Program Director Latesha Watkins.
On Monday July 19, 2021 Ricky, Inc delivered 35 loaded backpacks to the Access Program in Cambridge which provides valuable harm reduction and health services to anyone in need. They distribute Narcan and provide other life-saving support.
On Monday May 17, 2021 Ricky, Inc. started off the Second Annual Spring Backpack Distribution and visited Andrew House in Boston & Stoughton and distributed 34 backpacks to the men's detox programs. We were able to meet with and speak to the clients in both facilities and personally hand deliver the backpacks to them. Pictured above in the Ricky Giacoppo Memorial Reading Room in the Boston facility are Kayla Cardoza, Bernadette Giacoppo of Ricky, Inc. and Cherelle Ball.
On Tuesday May 18, 2021 Ricky, Inc. visited AHOPE & PAATHS Boston during their Second Annual Spring Backpack Distribution. PAATHS was issued 35 backpacks for their clients and we had the privilege to go into the newly renovated AHOPE Drop In Center and distribute another 35 backpacks directly to the clients. We were able to speak with them one on one and some were able to share stories about Ricky. All were very gracious and grateful to be receiving the Spring backpacks at such a difficult time. Pictured above with Rich & Bernadette is the wonderful staff at AHOPE.
Wednesday May 12, 2021 Ricky, Inc.s President Rich Giacoppo and Treasurer Dan Hovey proudly participated in the peaceful walk from Mass & Cass to the State House. This walk was to bring awareness to the horrible conditions that exist in this part of Boston and hope that state and local officials will address the deplorable living conditions and the wide-spread drug use that continues to take lives.
Ricky,Inc. was one of many organizations that participated in this walk and each representative got a chance to address the crowd. Above, Rich Giacoppo explains what Ricky, Inc does for homeless people and those suffering from substance use disorder, including veterans. He also noted that he wasn't sure that he could make it today as this walk comes two years & one day after he lost his son.
The past 2 years and especially the last few days have left him and his wife heartbroken and grieving terribly.
Organizers graciously requested and held a moment of silence in remembrance of Ricky.
Justin Downey of the Mass Ave Project made a powerful speech that had the crowd cheering. It was also a somber speech when he detailed the public health crisis that is currently happening. This very peaceful walk hopes to provide attention to a very serious and dire problem that is spiraling out of control.
Two years ago today (May 11, 2019) we lost our precious son Ricky. Pictured above as a young boy on a rock jetty on Cape Cod. he enjoyed fishing and swimming with his brothers Christopher and Nicholas here in Hyannis, MA. We spent many years on this jetty and it's beach during his youth and it was a spot that brought us all comfort and joy. The boys would catch fish, collect shells, swim all day and then go home and make sea shell necklaces with Mom & Dad.
Ricky is missed every minute of every day by all of us and God has truly robbed us of his incredible personality, unwavering loyalty and heart warming presence.
We love you and miss you every second of our lives,
Mom, Dad, Chris & Nick
We are starting our Spring backpack distribution in the next few weeks. Our plan is to provide over 200 backpacks to recovery homes, Detox programs, Department of Public Health programs that serve those with substance use disorder, and street outreach in the Mass Ave Boston area. Since we started this program in March 2020, we have been able to distribute over 850 filled backpacks to persons in need due to the kindness, compassion and generosity of people like you.
We are in the process of developing a partnership with a recovery home in which we will sponsor one person who has been accepted at the recovery home and provide their first month rent, a food store card, and backpack.
Once someone is released from detox, the next step is to enter a recovery home. Most people in this position cannot afford the first months’ rent in order to get accepted into the house in the first place. With our assistance they can have a place to call home for a month while they pursue employment so that they can pay their own rent and rebuild their lives.
This is our first step in expanding our service to those with SUD seeking recovery. At this time our plan is to sponsor one male and one female per year. With enough support, we will be able to offer more persons seeking recovery opportunities each year.
We would greatly appreciate donations towards our current goals of helping as many persons in need as possible.
Please visit the Help Our Cause link on this website Rickyinc.org.
Donations can be made from there either through PayPal, visiting our Amazon wish list, or sending a monetary donation to our PO Box. Please make out checks to Ricky, Inc.
"Make a difference is someones life."
Thank you in the name of our beloved son Ricky
On Feb. 24, 2021 Bernadette & Rich Giacoppo delivered 18 draw-string style backpacks to PAATHS - Boston and their staff. Each of these stylish backpacks contained the exact same contents as the regular backpacks that we distribute. We look forward to returning to PAATHS for our now "Annual Spring Backpack Distribution".
On Feb. 26, 2021 and March 4, 2021 Nick Giacoppo and his fiance' Virgina Norton were at it again and made backpack deliveries to Milestone Recovery. During 2 separate distribution efforts, they were able to deliver 26 loaded backpacks and Maine Resource Booklets to the Milestone Outreach Team.
On March 5, 2021 Bernadette and Rich returned to AHOPE - Boston and delivered 19 draw-string style backpacks filled with the usual personal needs items and resource booklets. Sarah and her staff were delighted to accept these donated backpacks and were thrilled to meet Ricky, Inc's mascot / dog Roxy during our outdoor delivery per Covid-19 precautions procedures.
We also look forward to returning to AHOPE for our "Annual Spring Backpack Distribution" with the hopes that we may be able to go inside and actually once again meet the recipients of the backpacks.
Since it's inception, Ricky, Inc. has distributed 839 filled backpacks to people in need in memory of our son, Ricky Giacoppo.
On Saturday February 20, 2021, Ricky, Inc. partnered with the BPD Street Outreach Unit to provide personal needs items to persons visiting the BPHC Engagement Center.
Ricky, Inc. distributed 64 filled backpacks (38 men & 26 women).
Thank you to all of the officers in the Boston Police Department Street Outreach Unit for their hard work and generosity towards Ricky, Inc.
With their help we were able to provide some valuable materials and relief to a vulnerable segment of our society.
Along with Ricky, Inc.s backpacks, the Street Outreach Unit provided jackets, socks, hygiene products, snacks and water to the many people in line from the Engagement Center.
Once all of the backpacks and other materials were stacked and the recipients were lined up: all of the materials were distributed in a very coordinated fashion.
All recipients were very appreciative and happy to receive their items, especially during such a cold winter month. One man, after inspecting the contents of his new backpack stated "Perfect timing, all of these will come in handy right now".
Thank you to Deputy Superintendent Michael Stratton and Sgt. Peter Messina for their leadership in coordinating and organizing this event in partnership with Ricky, Inc. and the Engagement Center.
We look forward to our next event working together again with the BPD.
Pictured above left to right is D.S. Stratton, Rich Giacoppo and Sgt. Peter Messina.
On Wednesday February 10, 2021 Ricky,Inc delivered 20 backpacks to the Fenway Health Center in Jamaica Plain to be distributed to their LBGTQ clients.
We want to thank them for all the services they provide to the LGBTQ community and their outreach to the community.
On Saturday February 20, 2021, Ricky,Inc. will be distributing 60 fully loaded backpacks and numerous other materials at the Boston Public Health Commission's Engagement Center on Atkinson Street in Boston.
We will be accompanied by the Boston Police Departments Street Outreach Unit who will also be distributing needed materials.
Pictured above is our new 2' x 8' Ricky, Inc. banner, which will be on display on our table at all future events.
On Mon February 1, 2021, Ricky, Inc. delivered 28 more filled backpacks to the Andrew House - Boston Detox facility along with 20 boxes of Girl Scout Cookies (donated by Ricky's Grandfather Mike Giacoppo) for the clients. We also donated a few dozen books and games for the Ricky Memorial Reading Room. The staff was gracious enough to allow me to visit my son's memorial reading room and I was extremely impressed at what a nice location it is. I know Ricky would have been using that room all day if it was there when he was. Pictured above in the reading room and accepting the Ricky, Inc. Certificate Of Appreciation for all of the great work that they do, is Cherelle Ball Case Aide Manager for the program. We extend our sincerest thanks for all of the staff members at Andrew House for the fantastic work that they do to help people in need.
On Thursday January 28, 2021 Ricky, Inc. visited with Boston Police Department Commissioner William G. Gross and Deputy Superintendent Michael J. Stratton. The meeting took place in the Commissioner's office with Ricky, Inc. President Rich Giacoppo and Ricky, Inc. Consultant M. Michael Giacoppo. As one of his last duties prior to his retirement, Commissioner Gross assigned Deputy Superintendent Stratton to partner with Ricky, Inc. in our community effort to help less fortunate persons suffering from homelessness, substance use disorder and mental illness. Deputy Stratton is assigned as the commander of the BPD Street Outreach Unit, which is a great community based unit to help persons in need from homelessness, substance use, mental illness and other recovery issues. Commissioner Gross & Deputy Superintendent Stratton are pictured above holding their new Ricky, Inc. t-shirts and displaying our logo and motto.
After meeting with us and discussing our organization and its programs, Deputy Stratton informed Ricky, Inc. that it will be a pleasure to partner with us and he very much looks forward to our first community venture together, hopefully within the next several weeks. He was presented with a Ricky, Inc. fully loaded backpack and was impressed with it's contents and especially the extensive Resource Booklet that we designed. Deputy Stratton shares our commitment to help every person in need that we possibly can and to try to make a difference in peoples lives that are in crisis.
Commissioner Gross stated " I will continue to support and work in partnership with Ricky, Inc. and the Boston Police Department in an effort to help members of our community". He also stated "what you're doing is such great work and something that is badly needed; I'm so happy that you're doing all of this and keeping Ricky's memory alive" . Commissioner Gross wishes to be notified of our activities together in Boston and would like to join us in our community events as a volunteer.
Congratulations to Commissioner Gross who has retired after 37 years of outstanding service to the City Of Boston, the Boston Police Department and it's citizens.
Enjoy the time off my friend, you've earned it!