It’s receiving a first-of-its-kind grant for an innovative approach to solving this issues that continues to plague our city.
Signs of hope, compassion and healing cover the walls of the Bullet Related Injury Clinic in St. Louis’ West End neighborhood.
Medical and Executive Director, Dr. LJ Punch, said no one else is doing what they’re doing.
“The idea that you would have a clinic that’s just focused on people and their families who have a bullet in their body or have been threatened by a bullet, that’s not a practice I’ve ever seen anywhere else,” he said.
Focused on holistic healing, Punch started the BRIC in November of 2020.
It’s his innovative approach that’s getting the clinic nationally recognized.
“To have a group, a national organization say, ‘Hey, we see you and it matters and you’re doing a good job, but we want to make sure you can keep serving the people you serve.’ That’s really affirming,” Punch said.
According to Punch, this grant awards organizations on their commitment to uniquely solving gun violence in their cities.
“We were identified as a promising practice that was worth funding. It was basically people recognizing that solutions aren’t going to come from somewhere else. They’re going to come from us. Every town, every mom, every place. It’s got to be us who creates a way forward,” he said.
The BRIC will get $50,000 that they have to use in one year.
Punch said they already know exactly how they want to spend that money.
“The most precious resource that we offer our patients at the BRIC are our healers,” he said.
They’ll spend the bulk of the money by adding more clinicians, therapists, chaplains and more, according to Punch, the rest will go towards patients’ wellness boxes.
“So that people can take a little piece of the BRIC home with them and continue those healing practices on their own,” he said.
Dealing with tragedy daily, Punch said, this gives them light when things often seem dark.
“My hope is that by helping people heal today’s bullet injuries, we prevent those bullet injuries that will come in the future,” he said.
Punch said the clinic has picked up a lot of momentum recently. They saw close to 200 patients in just the month of August.
He hopes that with this money BRIC medicine will be practiced in more hospitals, emergency rooms and doctors’ office across the city and country.