Our Mission

Stan Deen

Our mission: Improve the quality of life of children & teens survivors who have been through a traumatic event. By partnering with local and national Foundations. “Helping Survivors” is a broad mission designed specifically to allow flexibility in options for assisting and benefiting adolescents with a plethora of issues. Counseling services, mission retreats, humanitarian experiences, college tuition assistance, etc. are all avenues we will consider as a means for changing the direction of surviving children & teens.


Stan and Nate’s Story

Of all the relationships he formed throughout his lifetime, few were as special as the one with his surrogate son-Nathaniel who officially changed his name to Nathaniel Deen in March 2018.

Stan Deen helped Nathaniel see that life isn’t about all that you receive, but more about all that you give to others. Stan would often say this quote from HELLO DOLLY… “Money is like manure, it’s no good unless you spread it around encouraging young things to grow.” Nathaniel Deen has established THE STAN DEEN FOUNDATION to not only honor Stan, but to work with and rehabilitate children and teens who have endured tragedy just as he did. Nathaniel is living proof that “all the darkness in the world cannot extinguish the light of a single candle.”

Stan and Nate 1987

On the closing day of every GSPA show, Mr. Stan Deen would send his student off with inspiration…
Mr. Stan Deen
Teacher, Director, Speaker and so much more…

Stan Deen

A man of profound faith, Stan combined his love for the Lord with his passion for educating teenagers by serving as a youth minister for various churches throughout his lifetime. While at Garden Spot, he also established Early Birds, a weekly Bible study that he led before the school day began. For decades, Stan also was a highly sought-after public speaker and local humorist. In that role, he would share his testimony of salvation and recount poignant lessons he learned from teaching with many local audiences.

In addition to his lifelong passions for education and theatre, Stan enjoyed a deep love of reading (especially the works of Shakespeare), traveling, vacations to the Outer Banks, Broadway musicals (his favorite being “Billy Elliott”), Barbra Streisand, Marilyn Monroe, Neil Diamond, Doris Day, Achenbach’s Pastries, Jujyfruits, his friend Diana’s fruit salad, reminiscing with cherished friends, colleagues, and former students, and spending time with his beloved, “dysfunctional” family.

Nate on the set during the filming of BRAVE THE DARK in 2021

Nate Deen

Nathaniel Deen, lives in Lancaster, Pennsylvania with his wife Jessica, their two mini-golden-doodles, Winston & Remi, as well as their two cats, Stanley & Lucy. His 30 plus year career at Sight & Sound Theatres involves various positions including follow spot operator, actor, Sight & Sound photographer, and his current role, Films Associate Producer. Nathaniel’s life story is being made into a feature film called Brave the Dark, which centers around his experience of escaping the darkness of his past. With the help and unconditional love from a teacher, Mr. Stan Deen, Nathaniel was able to begin the healing process as he and Stan became a family. In 2018 Nathaniel and Jessica officially changed their last name to honor Stan and the love he showed Nathaniel. Along with Brave the Dark, Nathaniel has launched The Stan Deen Foundation, to help inspire hope in others who have struggled with traumatic experiences in life.

About the Stan Deen Foundation

THE STAN DEEN FOUNDATION is a registered 501c3 organization. All donations to this organization are tax exempt.

Contributions support: “Children & Teen survivors of traumatic events including being a witness to or victim of Domestic Violence/Drug abuse, etc.”


Nate’s Story / Braving the Darkness

Short Animation of Nate’s Story

Fundraising & Events

Current & Upcoming Events

Have a great time and support the Stan Deen Foundation at our signature annual event which happens each September or any of our other events throughout the year.

Learn More

Current & Upcoming Events

Have a great time and support the Stan Deen Foundation at our signature annual event which happens each September or any of our other events throughout the year.

Learn More

Current & Upcoming Events

Have a great time and support the Stan Deen Foundation at our signature annual event which happens each September or any of our other events throughout the year.

Learn More