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September is National Alcohol and Drug Addiction Recovery Month

9/4/2002:   Recovery from alcohol and drug addiction is a critical issue for an overwhelming number of families in the child welfare system. Evidence from various national studies suggests that as many as 80% of these families suffer from alcohol and drug addiction.

Each year, the Center for Substance Abuse Treatment of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) (www.samhsa.gov), along with its national planning partners, urges communities nationwide to make alcohol and drug addiction treatment, recovery, and support services a priority for children and families. This campaign encourages communities to expand their collaborative efforts to address this chronic but treatable public health problem.

Although September has been designated as National Alcohol and Drug Addiction Recovery Month, the Child Welfare League of America (CWLA) hopes that the campaign’s message will lead to a yearlong commitment to healthier living and improved well-being for children and families. The theme for this year’s event is “Join the Voices of Recovery: A Call to Action.” The campaign’s goals include:
  • Raising awareness of the effectiveness and benefits of substance abuse treatment;
  • Honoring the contributions of family, friends, and treatment providers who provide critical services and supports to children and their families affected by alcohol and drug addiction; and
  • Educating the public that addiction is a chronic, but treatable, public health problem in an effort to reduce the stigma associated with the treatment of addiction.


There is still time to get involved in Recovery Month activities in your community! Visit the Recovery Month web site (www.recoverymonth.gov/2002/) to
  • Download a Virtual Recovery Month Kit (or call SAMHSA’s National Clearinghouse for Alcohol and Drug Information at 1-800-729-6686 to request a free kit). The kit contains fact sheets for different target audiences, media outreach materials (sample op-ed articles, press releases, and public service announcements), and includes promotional ideas and sample legislative proclamations.
  • Learn about Recovery Month events that are happening in your community. The events-listing page is configured as a map of the United States, so viewers can click directly on a state and identify the activities that are planned.
  • Identify family and community resources that you can promote in your community. This section of the web site includes SAMHSA’s Substance Abuse Treatment Facility Locator, an on-line resource that identifies alcohol and drug abuse treatment programs; lists referrals for recovery and self-helps groups; and identifies links to substance abuse coalitions around the country.


Other helpful web sites include:

CWLA, Behavioral Health Division (BHD)
www.cwla.org/programs/bhd
For the last 10 years, CWLA has been a leader in the provision of technical assistance to the child welfare and alcohol and drug addiction fields. The BHD website has numerous resources that discuss the link between alcohol and drug addiction and child maltreatment.

Join Together Online (JTO)
www.jointogether.org
JTO is a comprehensive network of free Internet-based services supporting community-based efforts to address substance abuse and gun violence. Thousands of community leaders, professionals, and concerned citizens use JTO every day to be more informed and effective in their local efforts to reduce and prevent these devastating public health problems. With 100 new items posted each week, the site currently features over 35,000 daily news and fundraising articles, resource listings, in-depth feature stories, and other fully searchable documents dating back eight years.

SAMHSA
www.samhsa.gov
SAMHSA is the federal government's premiere source of information about substance abuse prevention, addiction treatment, and mental health services.

National Clearinghouse on Alcohol and Drug Information, 1-800-729-6686
www.health.org
Receive free information (in English and Spanish) on treatment and rehabilitation, research, and data targeted for community leaders, family and friends, teens/youth, women, and health professionals and clinicians. On this site, you can join SAMHSA’s Mailing List to receive timely information about topics that interest you in the area of mental health and substance abuse services. You will receive notifications of new grant and contract announcements, new publications, policy, and data, in precisely the areas in which you have an interest.

If you are involved in a Recovery Month event, please share your experience with CWLA so we
can highlight our collective efforts. For more information contact Steve Hornberger, Director of Behavioral Health, at shornberger@cwla.org or 202/639-4918.


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