Through empowerment and education, Picking Up The Pieces (PUTP) will teach those impacted by a major life event to identify their “new normal” and begin putting their lives back together one day at a time.



Dignity, respect, and compassion are the three core beliefs of Picking Up The Pieces. We believe that healthcare and safe living environments are a fundamental human right; therefore, we are committed to creating opportunity, solutions, and change, grounded in respect and self-determination for individuals and for our community. Picking Up The Pieces ensures quality cognitive, behavioral, and physical support programs for those in need.


Help (families) parents/siblings cope following the loss of a child/brother/sister to violent crimes.
Provide resources for education, interviewing, & entering the workforce
Provide  housing, support and referrals to those seeking assistance, including those undergoing treatment for addiction.
Provide spiritual healing through techniques learned to embrace a higher power and prayer
Organ Donation Education
Provide classes for health promotion and disease prevention and referral resources.



Following the homicide of Dr. Drake's twenty-two year old son in 2017, it became a personal and professional mission of hers to serve as a catalyst for violence awareness and changing the face of violence in the community. Although she takes every opportunity to speak on violence awareness in our community she felt that those efforts were not great enough. 

Dr. Drake started Picking Up The Pieces, originally a 501c(3) foundation, which is designed to support families following a major life event by helping them pick up the pieces of their life and new normal and begin to move forward. Dr. Drake had just gone through a new normal herself, so she knew what it felt like to be in a tragic transitional phase.


While working on a volunteer basis educating the public on gun violence, gun locks, and gun safes in the home, she started questioning the causes of such violence. Was violence due to a lack of money, therefore increasing the need for robbery and theft?  Was violence due to felonious acts that kept recently released prisoners from gaining employment thus increasing drug use, homelessness, and recidivism?  Was violence due to a lack of family or other emotional support which decreased the ability of youth and adults alike with coping? Well honestly, any of these or a combination of several can be the cause among other things. Therefore, Dr. Drake wanted to dive in a bit deeper to identify the problem at its core and use the information obtained to make a difference. She concluded at the end of every statement that "our people need help"!

So she started on her quest of a learning journey... She marched with students, local schools, and communities to increase awareness of gun violence and massive fatalities from school shootings across the country. She has taken opportunities to volunteer for Crime Stoppers, the Crisis Nursery, and victims of violence, among other not-for-profits organizations. To that end she soon found that unfortunately a local school had lost two thirds of its student enrollment. Of that number one-third of the students remaining are parents and serve as the only adult figure in their home. Dr. Drake understood that not being able to provide for ones family is a significant cause of turning to illegal activity to make ends meet. So she worked with counselors to host an underclothes drive for the students, a toy drive for Christmas, and a food drop service of perishable food items. By doing so, she could ensure that these students had healthy meals for themselves, their siblings, and children when away from school. Her overall goal was to provide an increased number of resources at school, to in turn increase attendance in the most convenient way possible. She was confident that although it was a minimal impact, every little bit helps!

As PUTP evolved, it became a resource for the community through housing, recommendations for emotional and spiritual support, education, and employment, as a way to help those in need achieve independence. Dr. Drake is committed to helping as many people as she can with just one person at a time, because "our people need help!"




Dr. Drake brings 23 years of experience as a registered nurse and 16 years as a nurse practitioner in various healthcare settings to her current role of Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Family Nurse Practitioner. Her experience includes bedside nursing, correctional healthcare, women’s health, home health, community health, a business leader, and adjunct faculty for undergraduate nursing students at the University of Missouri St. Louis. As faculty and alumni, Robyn uses her knowledge and ability to integrate research as a catalyst to improve outcomes for her community.  


Dr. Drake is committed to serving and making a difference in her community in the City of Ferguson, Missouri and it's surrounding municipalities. She is the founder of “Picking Up the Pieces LLC” which helps individuals and families faced with a life changing event pick up the pieces and move forward with their new normal. She was nominated as runner up for St. Louis Magazine’s Nurse Of The Year Award 2019 named 2019’s Advanced Practice Nurse of the Year for the National Black Nurses Association.  



Dr. Robyn Drake, DNP, APRN, FNP-BC

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