Janine Francolini

WELCOME

We are grateful to have you here visiting our website and learning more about our mission, which is also our passion: supporting and optimizing the holistic brain health of every person.

The birth of Flawless grew out of a personal journey and I am often asked why I started this work. As I frequently write about in the Huffington Post, I had untreated mental health challenges as a young child. Lack of awareness, education, and treatment unraveled to a life threatening point when I was an adolescent. I finally received extensive treatment, which saved my life, but my story is one that is all too common. As the patriarch of our cause, Patrick Kennedy, always says: “when it comes to mental health, why do we wait until its ‘sick care’ instead of ‘health care’?” As I came to better understand the dire state of our education and mental health care systems I was called to action. When I launched Flawless I didn’t have much of a plan — I worked at my kitchen table, coordinating with a friend in New York who would bake cookies and send them to a school for children with serious behavior challenges that we had started to serve in Portland, Oregon. With each passing year, our impact has grown, and we now have a truly national scope — advocating for and partnering with others to promote mental health awareness and treatment across the country.

Why the peacock? In 2002, I thought I had the dream job as an admissions director at a prestigious school in New York City with a coveted spot for my child. We were set, until I had an epiphany. I was interviewing 500 children and families a year for approximately ten spots. I started to question why I went to graduate school, and remembered that my goals had been to teach, connect, and nurture. Instead my days were spent judging, testing, and eliminating. Every day of that soul-searching year I had lunch with my son in a garden where peacocks were running around. That was the year that a light bulb went off for me. I knew what I was called to do: see the perfection in every child. To everyone’s surprise, I resigned from my job, relinquished my child’s spot at the school, and the journey towards creating Flawless began.

Although we began with a focus on children with brain-based behavioral challenges, we’ve since expanded our mission to include advocating for individuals of all ages. We consider this cause to be so critical that we classify it a public health emergency. Our drive to diminish the school to prison pipeline, lower the high rate of youth suicide, and prevent the perpetuation of school violence are daunting tasks. However, it is a mission fueled by unyielding hope and the belief in the resilience and inherent goodness in every human being. We at Flawless see the perfection of every person, honor the reality of brain-based behavioral differences, and know that every single human being deserves respect, support, and love.

With Gratitude,

Janine's Signature