GUEST EDITORIAL • September Is National Recovery Month

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September is National Recovery Month.  This year’s theme is,

• Recovery is for everyone

• Every person

• Every family

• Every community

Many organizations in Montgomery County and beyond are working hard to make this theme a reality. 

This month there was a “Strike Out Suicide” event in Litchfield, a Rockin’ Recovery Concert in Woodriver, the Grand Opening of St. Francis Way (SFW) Clinic and the Columbian Blvd.  Dental Clinic, and a Recovery Month Book Fair at Gift of Voice in Edwardsville. There are probably many more events happening as well.

Montgomery County Mental Health is going to increase their counseling staff in order to better serve their clients. They have a weekly Grief Support Group, actively partner with Montgomery County Drug Court, have a Children’s Prevention Counselor and will be part of establishing a Crisis Intervention team in 2022.

Who hasn’t noticed the billboards that Hillsboro Area Hospital (HAH) put up to promote mental health and suicide prevention for students all sponsored by the David Imler Project?  HAH, through the David Imler Project, has also financed mental health programs in Hillsboro High School and Hillsboro Junior High School.   The Hillsboro schools are working closely with the Nokomis School District to help them incorporate some of the same programs.

HSHS St. Francis Hospital will be working with SFW Clinic to better assess people who come to the emergency room who may need substance use or mental health treatment.

In the past few months, Safe Passages, a program that helps people with substance use disorder to be compassionately transported to treatment, has established four more access points in Litchfield, Hillsboro and Staunton.  SFW Clinic is not only the promoter of this program, but they provide the transportation as well.  Safe Passages is already established in Nokomis and Taylorville too.

Celebrate Recovery, a Christian Twelve-Step Program, meets every Monday at Hillsboro Free Methodist Church.  They start with a free dinner at 5 p.m., followed by a large group meeting with worship, testimonials and teaching and then break out into small groups.  NetChurch in Stauton will be having the same program on Thursday evenings.  There is also a very active Celebrate Recovery Group that meets at Christ Tabernacle Church in Herrick. 

Cross Over Ministries will continue to offer one-on-one support by Recovery Support Peers as well as Second Saturday Art.  They will also be adding a Coffee and Connection Group, Bible Study 101, and are looking into a Game Night, an Exercise Program and a Suicide Survivors Support Group and Employment Preparation classes. Along with these additions, their desire continues to be to establish a home, a free alternative Crisis Intervention Program where people can participate in their own recovery in an environment of hope, opportunity, mercy and encouragement. 

Yes, there is much going on to promote recovery.  May I offer a suggestion that would make it an even stronger recovery community? 

•You…actively learning more about substance use disorder and mental health conditions

• You…participating in events that promote recovery and reduce stigma

• You…volunteering

• You…financially supporting recovery programs

• You…hiring people who are in recovery

• You…welcoming people in recovery into your life. 

Will you be the one to help make this year’s theme…

• Recovery is for everyone

• Every person

• Every family

• Every community

. . . a reality in our communities?

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