For the 24th year, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), is sponsoring National Recovery Month (Recovery Month). This long-standing observance spreads the message that prevention works, treatment is effective, and people recover from mental and/or substance use disorders. The observance also celebrates people in recovery and those who work in the behavioral health field.
This year’s Recovery Month theme, “Join the Voices for Recovery: Together on Pathways to Wellness,” emphasizes that there are many unique ways people can prevent behavioral health issues, seek treatment, and sustain recovery. The theme also highlights the importance of mental, physical, and emotional well-being, as well as the value of family, friends, and community members throughout the recovery journey.
SAMHSA created the toolkit to increase awareness of the power of recovery. The kit provides individuals and organizations with the resources they need to help people with mental and/or substance use disorders. It also assists in planning Recovery Month events and offers resources to distribute in communities and during local events.
The toolkit contains four sections, including one showcasing real-life examples of people in recovery:
- Targeted Outreach – Offers audience-specific information about the benefits of recovery, effectiveness of treatment, and tips to overcome challenges during the recovery process.
- Media Outreach – Provides instructions to plan and promote Recovery Month activities and events, as well as templates to customize and send to local and online media outlets.
- Resources – Provides resources to help plan and prepare for Recovery Month events, including tips to cultivate partnerships with other organizations.
- Join the Voices for Recovery – Presents a snapshot of individuals on different recovery pathways after experiencing a mentaland/or substance use disorder.
The toolkit also features a series of infographics that visually represent behavioral health data.
Recovery Month continues to thrive because of the support and participation of individuals, communities, and organizations. SAMHSA is grateful for your continued dedication to making a difference in the lives of those affected by mental and/or substance use disorders.
David Backes writes the Friday news roundup for Reclaiming Futures and contributes articles about juvenile justice reform and adolescent substance abuse treatment to ReclaimingFutures.org. He has a bachelor’s degree in sociology from Santa Clara University. David works as an account executive for Prichard Communications.
Updated: August 21 2013