MATTHEW ORNSTEIN

MEMORIAL FOUNDATION

In honor of the values, passions, and life of

Matthew Harris Ornstein

July 28, 1980  -  January 3, 2015

I tell people that when a family experiences tragedy, the most important thing they can do is to turn their grief into purpose.

-Joe Biden

ABOUT US

“We’re all here for a time, to learn, or love, or learn to love, in all the seemingly infinite ways that can happen.”

-Letter from Matthew, 2005

The Matthew Harris Ornstein Memorial Foundation was established in 2015 in honor of Matthew who died on January 3, 2015 as the result of a tragic accident. Prior to his death, Matthew had led a full and impactful life. He was a national champion debater, Princeton graduate and hollywood writer. But, perhaps most importantly he was a devoted friend and family member.

 

After his death, his friends and family gathered to come up with a way to honor Matthew’s life. From those conversations, the foundation was born. The foundation started as a small initiative in 2015, but thanks to the generosity of its donors has grown into a formidable force advocating for mental illness and urban debate.

PROGRAMS & INITIATIVES

Click below to learn more about our major programs and initiatives.

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DEBATE CAMP

Almost 200 DC middle and high school students come together each summer for a free annual training in policy debate that gives them a head start for the school year.

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DOCUMENTARY

Learn about our feature-length film about successful approaches to decriminalizing mental illness. The film premiered at the Miami Film Festival and is still streaming on PBS.

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LEAP TRAININGS

Each year, the Foundation sponsors training sessions with noted psychologist Xavier Amador on the LEAP method for engaging with people with anosognosia.

GET INVOLVED

Whether it's through a small donation, sharing a recollection about Matthew, or volunteering for one of our projects, we encourage you to reach out and get involved.