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  • 9/5/2013 pg. 8 The Beacon Newspaper of the Diocese of Paterson, N.J.
  • Catholic Charities agency to participate in annual Recovery Walk in Paterson


    PATERSON — To mark National Recovery Month, local organizations, including Straight and Narrow, an agency of diocesan Catholic Charities, will take part in the third annual Recovery Walk with the theme, “Join the Voices for Recovery: Together on Pathways to Wellness.”

    The event starts at 9 a.m., Saturday, Sept. 7 on the steps of the Passaic County Courthouse, 77 Hamilton Street here. From there, the walk will proceed to Eastside Park. In addition to the walk, the all-day event includes speeches, music, food, and a softball tournament. The gospel choir of Straight and Narrow will sing at the opening and closing ceremonies.

    More than 100 clients and staff members of Straight and Narrow will be participating in the event to endorse National Recovery Month, which promotes the societal benefits of prevention, treatment and recovery for mental and substance use disorders, celebrates people in recovery, lauds the contributions of treatment and service providers and promotes the message that recovery in all its forms is possible.

    Vito Andrisani, director of the counseling and outpatient services division at Straight and Narrow, said, “Every year in September the substance abuse treatment community commemorates wellness through recovery from drug use and promotes awareness and understanding of mental and substance use disorders through the Recovery Walk.”

    According to Andrisani, the aim of the walk is to celebrate individuals, who have sustained long-term recovery and honor people and organizations that make recovery possible. An added benefit of the celebration is that it provides hope to individuals and families who have been afflicted with addictions or mental illness, he said.
    Also participating in the Recovery Walk will be Eva’s Village. “Our hope is that with increased access to prevention, treatment, and recovery support services, families, policymakers, businesses and health care providers will reach out to those in need to assist them in finding appropriate treatment options,” said Joanne Fagan, communications and grant specialist at Eva’s Village, said.

    Other sponsoring organizations involved in the Recovery Walk include the Passaic County Board of Chosen Freeholders, Passaic County Mental Health and Addiction Services, William Paterson University, Turning Point and the N.J. Governor’s Council on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse.

    “The walk brings to the community’s attention the seriousness of the problem of substance abuse and also shines a light on the ability to recover from substance abuse. The event brings attention to the multitude of treatment services available for the substance user not only to achieve recovery but also to maintain an alcohol and illicit drug free lifestyle as well,” Andrisani said. “The event serves as a means to reduce and eliminate the negative stigma of the disease of addiction. The Recovery Walk ultimately serves as education to the community and the media that there is hope after the onset of addiction.”

    Information: Straight and Narrow (973) 345-6000.
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