COLUMBUS, Ohio — A little over a year ago, Jenna Righi started her own jewelry business called "Link Before You Sink."

  • Link Before You Sink has reached thousands nationwide just in the last year
  • If you purchase a link you also get to choose which charity you’d like your money to go towards
  • Link Before You Sink donates at least 25% of every sale to their partner nonprofits

The necklaces and bracelets are creatively made out of recycled bike chain links.

Their purpose is to connect people going through similar struggles at a time when they feel alone. 

“So, the reason that I really started Link Before You Sink is a personal one…I’ve been there, I know what it’s like to hit rock bottom, but I also know what it’s like to be out of it and look back and see what you’ve persevered from,” said Righi. “In spring of 2014, I lost my father, I lost a childhood friend’s mother who I was very close with, and I broke off an engagement. And I literally moved from Florida all the way back to Ohio and hit the reset button. I know what it’s like to feel like you’re alone and you’re not going anywhere, so I created Link Before You Sink to kind of connect individuals through similar struggles, really for them to know you’re not alone.” Righi said. 

And it’s working.

Link Before You Sink has reached thousands of people from all over the country, just in the last year since it began operations out of Righi’s home in Columbus. 

The process is as simple or as deep as you want it to be.

On the website, you have the option to shop for a link, select a category, and share your story. 

There’s a whole process to this — kind of like the healing process.

"And it doesn’t have to go in that order either. We have some people that will just go on the site and share their story…with each link that you purchase…jewelry piece…you are linked with someone else going through a similar struggle, and there’s different categories to choose from, and I always say they are not necessarily there to define, because everyone’s story is different, so the categories are very broad, but you’re getting a story once you purchase a link…noun…with a verb of linking with somebody going through what you’ve been through, something that you’ve been through…so, loss of a loved one or miscarriage or divorce, and then when you’re ready to give it back, you can share your story through the site and give it to someone in need.” said Righi. 

Righi agrees that being able to talk about it and find that connection with other people, is really the best way to heal.

“That’s totally true, and the more that I started to share my story, the more that people started reciprocating with me and we both felt good after that…and I know it sounds cliche…the power of vulnerability, it really is true…it’s just so underrated and it is just so powerful, the power of connection, in so many ways, and that’s why I created Link Before You Sink,” Righi said.

Her labor of love business started when the chain feel off the bike she was riding.

“I was reading books on how to help people and it just hit me…I was riding my bike and the bike chain actually fell off, and it just hit me that I could create something out of this, and I went to local Columbus bike shops, starting breaking down the bike chain, and when I realized that it broke down into a double and a flat and could be made into jewelry, it was the perfect story behind my mission, which is turning something broken into something beautiful,” said Righi.

When asked if she feels like this is now her life's work, Righi responded without hesitation.

"I feel like it’s my life’s work…I never saw it…I was literally wondering what I was gonna explain to people…I was at rock bottom. Now looking back in hindsight, that was one of the best things that ever happened to me. No, nothing will ever bring my dad back, but that area in my life gave me the strength to move on, and it’s why I am the way I am ,and Link Before You Sink would not have existed if I didn’t go through that struggle in my life," said Righi. “It’s not about my story, it’s about everyone’s story, and, you know what I mean…you’re not alone, you’re not alone no matter what struggle you’re going through, there is somebody that understands the aspect of what you’re going through.”

Link Before You Sink donates at least 25% of every sale to their partner nonprofits.

Their current partners include Cleveland Clinic Children’s, Love is Louder, and Nationwide Children’s Hospital.

If you purchase a link you also get to choose which charity you’d like your money to go towards. 

More information can be found on their website.