One of the goals of my foundation, Bridge to a Cure, is to help children with various diseases and disorders to lead happier, healthier lives. I’m dedicated to accomplishing this by promoting research collaboration and advocating for a national database, as well as looking at all the resources and alternative treatment options available.

When you consider the needs of children with behavioral health disorders such as ADHD, traditional medicine and current treatment options are especially limited, yet it’s one of the most prevalent childhood illnesses, with more than 17.1 million children in the U.S. diagnosed with a psychiatric illness.

These statistics are frightening, but not surprising when you consider the challenges our youth are facing, from online bullying to high-pressure academics to working parents with limited support networks. Unfortunately, these challenges are compounded for a child or adolescent also grappling with one of many common social or behavioral conditions, including ADHD, autism, bipolar and anxiety.

While my foundation tackles research collaboration and database opportunities, I’m putting on my author and grandfather hat to address the emotional side of the issues, and appeal to the kids who are struggling, and those who care about them.

I started by asking myself, and my readers, to imagine how much a day in the life of a child with a disorder could be improved by a kind individual.

What if we could all help provide them with a safe, understanding and nurturing environment? What if peers are inclusive and accepting of differences? It’s not just children with disorders who can benefit from such an environment, all children can.

That’s where The Amazing Ninja Brothers steps in to save the day.

Meet Tommy and the Ninja Brothers
Aiden and Jacob are a new wave of Ninjas, and stars of my latest children’s chapter book series, to be released in October 2018. In The Amazing Ninja Brothers: Entering the Deep Unknown, Aiden and Jacob use their keen gift of understanding others, and drawing on kindness and caring, as their weapons to help their friend, Tommy.

Their strength comes from their ability to help kids with a disorder to cope. Thanks to their grandfather, Papa, each boy receives a magical ninja ring and with each ring, comes a magical power. Jacob’s ring helps him figure out why a person acts the way they do. Once he describes a child and their actions, Papa makes the connection to the disorder of the child. The ring gives him the power of empathy, enabling him to find ways to help others understand the disorder and want to help that child.

Together the brothers play active roles in helping their friends to be more supportive, and kinder to a child w, and to understand that each child’s mind works differently, and that’s something to celebrate!

Along the way, kids reading books from The Amazing Ninja Brothers series will learn the importance of providing their support to kids with disorders as well.  Each story will show behavior that amplifies a different, but common disorder. While the books do not end with a cure, kids will gain a better understanding. The hope is that they can also enlighten and inspire caring support from more friends and family members.

How you can help
Entering the Deep Unknown is a fast-paced story that will satisfy a kid’s appetite for adventure while generating thought and discussion about ADHD. It successfully balances action, humor and fantasy to provide readers with a “page-turner” story.

To help us help kids support their peers with disorders, check out The Amazing Ninja Brothers: Entering the Deep Unknown, which becomes available during ADHD Awareness Month in October 2018 in hardcover, paperback, e-book and audiobook. Please read it with your children, students or grandchildren, and start a conversation on how they can find ways to better support a friend or classmate.