Thank You

We want to thank our sponsors and corporate donors. Without the support of our trusted and valued sponsors, we would not be able to continue our mission to help young people. Your support is greatly appreciated.

Frontier Behavioral Health
Geeks on Wheels
Hearn Brothers Printing
Missionary Chocolates
Office Depot
QPR Institute
RBC Wealth Management
Red Lion Foundation
Spokane Regional Health
Spokane Rotary 21
WA Trust Bank



We at SMILE want to thank you for your support over the years.  Since our start in 1997, SMILE has worked to support teachers, counselors and medical professionals in the Northwest and we have contributed to meaningful, positive change with your contributions.
Due to health challenges our board of directors has determined that as of this year, SMILE will conclude our philanthropic work.
Additionally, SMILE is no longer requesting donations.
Again, thank you for helping us enhance resources for students and families to improve mental health and resiliency, and honor the life of Craig Toribara.
We wish you all the best and a wonderful 2024.
Susan Toribara, MBA
Vice President of SMILE



Who We Are

SMILE, a 501(c)3 non-profit educational organization, was formed after the suicide of Craig Toribara. Many dehumanizing experiences are forced on our youth by critical areas of society. Increasing stress results in escalating alcohol/drug use, anorexia, bulimia, dropping out of school, running away from home, increasing violence, and suicide. We intend to help change this destructive trend through education. This education will include, but not be limited to, development and promotion of life-skills programs, building resiliency, healthy solutions, and awareness/prevention programs. We intend to empower youth to find solutions to emotional pain and hope for their futures through various media. We develop educational materials and work with existing programs. We intend to meet our goals by reaching out to individuals from birth through 25 years, locally and in other geographic areas, and educating adults on issues affecting young people.


SMILE is an educational group dedicated to providing information to those who need it. We do NOT council or clinically assess situations. If you are in an emergency situation, contact your local officials or call 911.

Our Mission

The mission of SMILE is twofold:


1. Provide adults, parents, teachers, and medical professionals with the tools, education, and resources they need to effectively teach and demonstrate critical life skills.
2. Provide children and young people with the life skills they need to be aware of consequences and alternatives of their actions, thus empowering them to make self-enhancing choices.


SMILE understands some accepted practices and institutions in our society create inordinate levels of stress and can serve to dehumanize and alienate our children. These stress levels can lead to depression and/or a sense of hopelessness that these children aren’t equipped to handle. In such circumstances, these young people frequently turn to self-destructive behaviors. It is SMILE’s objective to modify, through education, these practices and institutions, while at the same time empowering our children to cope with any challenge life might present.


Our History




Christie Toribara received The Golden Rule Award for education from J.C. Penney on behalf of SMILE in April, 2000.


Eli Lilly selected Christie Toribara, on behalf of SMILE, as the 2001 Welcome Back Awards Special Recognition honoree for Destigmatization.


AFSP-NW 2005 Youth Suicide Prevention Award presented to Christie Toribara for SMILE endeavors.


Volunteer Award to SMILE from Spokane Regional Health for 2007, 2011, 2012, and 2013

Molalla River School District recognized SMILE as an Outstanding Community Partner on February 12, 2015




SMILE initiated the campaign of education on at-risk issues with the creation of two suicide awareness & prevention pamphlets, a handbook for adolescents’ families titled “Is This Really Normal?”, and various newspaper, television, and radio interviews along with radio public service campaigns. Caring professionals have presented on building resiliency and at-risk issues using the most current information available, creating greater awareness, correcting misconceptions, and dissipating stigma often attached to depression, affective disorders, and suicide.


SMILE continues to donate resources to all educational levels, families, medical personnel, and organizations on drug addiction, abuse, anger management, grief, depression, PTSD, suicide, and other youth related topics. Together with professionals and other organizations SMILE works to educate families and youth on critical issues, reaching out to over 120,000 students, their families, and connected adults.


Work on civility and anti-bullying began with Dr. Forni of Johns Hopkins University.  The work continues with grants to the Libby Center, NEWESD 101, and the Molalla River School District.
-Molalla River School District Grants support STEM initiatives aimed at resiliency building and promoting problem solving, cooperative team-building projects, and anti-bullying resources for teachers, administrators, and counselors.


The arts increase communication skills, understanding cultural differences, enhance creativity, and strengthen all types of learning. The following are examples of our work in this area which started in 1998:


-Internationally-known jazz pianist/composer David Benoit was instrumental in using his music to reach young people

-Over 500 students from several schools enjoyed a workshop with noted poet/author Janet Wong at Libby Center

-Patti Osebold instructed the art of origami

-Fellers imparted mask making, writing stories & songs

-Jon Pearson taught imagery methods in learning

-Christi Anne demonstrated the use of lines and angles to draw pictures

-Jim Valley (Paul Revere & the Raiders fame) used music for movement and putting poems to song

-Hermon Joyner & Kathleen Monaghan - authors of the award-winning textbook Focus taught the art of photography
-Deanna Camp helped to develop personal logos
-Suzanne Ostersmith, Dance Program Director for Gonzaga University’s Theatre and Dance Department
-Mr. X The Math Magician, Bob Bishop, taught workshops to students and staff at the Libby Center
-Partners Through Art will be focusing on civility and anti-bullying utilizing the medium of theater

-Steve Schreiner on use/misuse of cyber space

The “Starting Blocks” CD (in English and Spanish), covering 112 topics was distributed to 5,000 families, medical personnel, counselors, and other professionals. Partnership with the AACAP (American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry), and the generous donation of David Benoit’s music and Zoltan Szabo’s artwork made this CD possible.