Ever since I met Chacku at a conference nearly a decade ago, he has been a brother and dear friend to me. A loving son, husband and father, Chacku is dedicated to creating a better world for us all. He is the Director of the NAMI STAR Center and a leader in the Peer Movement, a movement that once saved his life.
As a toddler, Chacku moved to the U.S. from Kuwait and growing up, he didn’t feel like he belonged. He was bullied at school and watched his parents treated with hostility, and started to mistrust everyone including his family. Feeling unsafe and unable to cope with his feelings of isolation and dread, he got into fights and began using drugs. And, at fifteen, he tried to kill himself. Fortunately, his father sought help at their local church and Chacku discovered peers who empathized with his struggles and inspired him to discover his life’s purpose – to help others like himself. “Our struggles often help us discover who we are, and our purpose in life” Chacku says, “We are the evidence that recovery is possible.”
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