Community & Family Program Staff train AmeriCorp Members about Addiction & Recovery
Eight AmeriCorp staff members from Good Samaritan Ministries' Faith in Youth Program recently received training on how to more effectively work with youth who may be at risk to abuse substances.
New On-Line Resource:
OAR on facebook - a place where you can talk openly about addiction & recovery. Whether you are alumni, someone struggling with addiction, in recovery, or a family member or friend of someone facing an addiction, please feel free to join this on-line forum & participate at whatever level you feel comfortable. Simply click on the facebook icon to preview OAR on facebook.
OAR's Community and Family Program –
Making a Difference in our Community
Increasing Awareness in Our Community:
People are amazed when they hear statistics related to addiction. Like the fact that on an average day almost 8000 youth will begin drinking alcohol and that 40% of those that start at age 14 or younger will be alcohol dependent as adults. “I had no idea!” is the common response. It’s our goal to change that – we want people to know about addiction, and that treatment for addiction works. That’s why we’re out in the community, we want to increase knowledge about addiction, reduce the stigma associated with it, and offer hope and healing to the families that have been devastated by it. We do this through a variety of venues. We offer weekly educational seminars on addiction, treatment, and how families can begin their recovery journey. We also host a weekly lunch discussion group addressing addiction and the family.
But we don’t just wait for people to come to us, we go out into our community. Recently we assisted the Holland Youth Advisory Council in preparing for and hosting the Holland Youth Summit. The Summit was attended by community leaders and students from all of the surrounding high schools. One of the focus areas of the Summit was how the youth of our community, with help and support from the City of Holland, can address the challenges of youth substance abuse.
This Spring the Community and Family Program will be presenting at the Challenge of Children Conference at Hope College and at several area churches.
Offering Hope and Healing to Families: As we spend time out in the community, we connect with families that have been hijacked by addiction. They come in all shapes and sizes with one thing in common, substance abuse within their family. We’ve assisted teens whose parents are struggling with addiction, parents whose children are struggling, and grandparents whose grandchildren are struggling, and just about every family combination in between. Families members are often physically, emotionally, and spiritually exhausted when we first meet. Our purpose is to bring them hope and to connect with treatment resources. Some join our Recovering Families Group; others make use of family sessions or individual counseling sessions, or a combination of all three. The result has been transformed lives, and transformed families. Several of the families we started working with this past fall are looking forward to their first summer in recovery. To quote one 6-year-old, “Dad’s much nicer now.”
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