"Recovery changes the conversation from problem to solution"
This month’s Partners Facing Addiction post features a clinical group in New York, a treatment center in Texas, and a recovery organization in North Carolina. If you’d like your organization to be considered for an upcoming Partners Facing Addiction post, answer a few short questions here.
START Treatment & Recovery Centers
START Treatment and Recovery Centers is a privately owned group of clinics in New York. Its eight locations include seven opioid treatment programs in the communities of Brooklyn and Manhattan. In addition to offering primary medical care and comprehensive HIV/AIDS services, we also provide mental health counseling to adolescents in the juvenile justice system. START emphasizes access to resources and education about addiction, a crucial part of START’s mission statement. The company was a presence in the AIDS Walk and also hosted a community screening of the Netflix documentary Heroin(e) at their local public library.
To accomplish this, START’s Community Outreach Liaison has been out knocking on doors and engaging businesses, community boards, and police precincts, and attending public health events or public events to talk with people about substance use disorder. START works to treat all potential aspects of addiction, from homelessness to unemployment to other chronic diseases to co-occurring behavioral health disorders and more. “But now we need to work harder to engage a community that seems more ready to get involved than at any point in recent memory, and in doing so, we can spark a change in the way people see addiction in NYC and beyond.”
Currently, START is hosting a young professionals’ fundraising mixer called Spring Into Recovery. “Our vision is that between the creation of a new community outreach liaison position at START and the ongoing national spotlight on the opioid epidemic, we can harness the growing momentum of young people who want to make a difference in Brooklyn. The growth of our social media channels, a younger staff, and increasing interest from our community has indicated that the time is right for us to engage this generation.”
The event will feature speakers from START’s staff who will touch on both the medical and behavioral health aspects of opioid use disorder, as well as community partners, food, drinks, and a raffle. Another Action Network partner, a social addiction treatment technology company called Addicaid, plans to attend as a presenter.
START will use this event to encourage attendees to take action not just through fundraising and donations but by direct engagement. The mixer will include naloxone training and resources for people in recovery.
Sobriety Matters is a treatment center in Texas that offers private pay substance use treatment to people in need. In their community, the rehab aims to create impact, work for change, and band together with other groups and individuals to support recovery.
Last month, Sobriety Matters hosted a naloxone training event. Approximately 95 people attended. The event encouraged people to take part in an open dialog about addiction and take part in a candlelight vigil to honor people who lost their lives to addiction. Sobriety Matters wants to encourage advocacy and shares upcoming events and advocacy opportunities with its mailing list. One recurring opportunity is a volunteer position at The Beacon, to serve the homeless.
Later this year, Sobriety Matters will host a recovery community gratitude meeting. The celebration will include a cookout with hot dogs and hamburgers, live music, and a speakers’ meeting. The event is from 1-4 p.m. on November 8.
Communities Rallying For Recovery (CRFR)
Communities Rallying For Recovery hosts North Carolina’s largest recovery event, the Western Regional Recovery Rally in Haywood County, North Carolina. The event’s chairman Troy Daniel Reece said, “We want to make it known that Recovery can happen anywhere and anytime. Recovery isn’t a one-day or one-month thing, it’s lifelong. Anyone can be in recovery.”
The 2018 Rally was attended by more than 380 people. The gathering represented a total of 1,859 years, 4 months, and 1 week of time in recovery. 150 of the people attending were in recovery; 65 people were family members of people in recovery; and 161 people identified as recovery allies. An additional 48 people were interested in learning about recovery.
Reece said, “We are wanting to be a positive change and pass the message that people do achieve and sustain recovery from any and all walks of life. Recovery changes the conversation from problem to solution. We are truly one community in recovery.”