Road to Recovery March 2012

You may know someone that needs the road to recovery, but unless they ask for directions it is likely they are not ready to get on the road.

Road to Recovery March 2012 is here!

We know that almost 1 in 10 Americans struggle with a substance abuse disorder and 1 in 5 Americans have a mental illness.  Treatment and recovery are a pathway forward.

The National Recovery Month (Recovery Month) campaign offers help and hope not only for individuals receiving recovery services and in recovery but also for families, loved ones, and friends. The benefits of treatment and recovery-oriented services and supports in behavioral health ripple out across entire communities throughout our Nation, proving there are effective treatments and that people do recover.

As the Road to Recovery series kicks off its 12th season, this episode will highlight the many accomplishments of the 2011 Recovery Month campaign and look forward to a successful September 2012 Recovery Month.

Please visit http://www.recoverymonth.govfor more information.Join me on Facebook  and follow me on Twitter for more information and educational articles on parenting today’s teenagers.


National Drug Facts Week: Help Stop Teen Drug Use

Shatter the Myths!

National Drug Facts Week is Monday, October 31st through Sunday, November 6th, 2011.

Why do people and teens smoke when they know it is bad for them?

Maybe they smoke because they can’t stop. People start smoking for different reasons,but most keep doing it because of one reason—they are addicted to nicotine.

DID YOU KNOW? Research says that teens who see a lot of smoking in movies are more likely to start smoking themselves. Sometimes characters smoke to look edgy and rebellious; but sometimes it’s justabout “product placement” — the tobacco industry trying to get into your head and your pockets.

Teen Drinking:

FACT:  More than 4 in 10 people who begin drinking before age 15 eventually become alcoholics.

Teen Prescription Drug Use:

FACT:  In 2007, prescription pain medications like Vicodin and OxyContin were involved in more overdose deaths than heroin and cocaine combined.

Want to learn more FACTS about teens and substance use?  Download Shatter the Myths.

Be an educated parent – you will have safer and healthier teens.

Join me on Facebook  and follow me on Twitter for more information and educational articles on parenting today’s teenagers.

Teen Drug Prevention: Red Ribbon Campaign

Did you know:  Children of parents who talk to their teens regularly about drugs are 42% less likely to use drugs than those who don’t, yet only a quarter of teens report having these conversations.

SAMHSA invites you to participate in the 26th annual Red Ribbon Week.

Red Ribbon Week—the oldest and largest drug prevention program in the Nation—is a way for people and communities to unite and take a visible stand against drugs. This year’s theme, “It’s Up to Me To Be Drug Free,” reminds us that we each share individual responsibility in creating a drug-free environment.


It is an ideal way for people and communities to unite and take a visible stand against drugs. Show your personal commitment to a drug-free lifestyle through the symbol of the Red Ribbon, October 23 – 31st.


The Red Ribbon Campaign was started when drug traffickers in Mexico City murdered DEA agent Kiki Camarena  in 1985. This began the continuing tradition of displaying Red Ribbons as a symbol of intolerance towards the use of drugs. The mission of the Red Ribbon Campaign is to present a unified and visible commitment towards the creation of a DRUG-FREE AMERICA.


The National Family Partnership is the national sponsor of the Red Ribbon Campaign. We are helping citizens across the state come together to keep children, families and communities safe, healthy and drug-free, through parent training, networking and sponsoring the National Red Ribbon Campaign.


A theme unifies each year’s campaign and helps to broadcast one message creating a tipping point to change behavior.


Plan a Red Ribbon celebration. Order and display Red Ribbon materials with the National Red Ribbon Theme.  Proceeds from the sale of Red Ribbon theme merchandise helps support prevention programs across America. Order  for your family, students, staff, patients, employees and customers and encourage them to wear the Red Ribbon symbol  during Red Ribbon Week, October 23rd-31st.

Sponsored by National Family Partnership.

Join me on Facebook  and follow me on Twitter for more information and educational articles on parenting today’s teenagers.

Stop Medicine Abuse is Looking for the Next Five Mom: It Could be You!

Help Stop Teen Cough Medicine Abuse

Talking to teens about drug abuse is never easy. Did you know teens that learn about the dangers of drugs from their parents are 50 percent less likely to abuse drugs? As parents, we must work together to educate our teens and create awareness about the dangers of substance abuse, including over-the-counter (OTC) cough medicine abuse.

In 2007, five moms from around the country were brought together to share information with other parents about the largely unknown trend among teens of abusing OTC cough medicines to get high. Since then, the Five Moms campaign has reached more than 24 million parents to help educate them about preventing teen cough medicine abuse, spreading awareness to parents, schools, and communities. And now they want your help! The campaign recently launched the Are You the Next Five Mom? search to look for a new Mom to join the fight against cough medicine abuse.

Are you a mom who is passionate about working with teens? Do you have experience working with teens and substance abuse? If you are interested in being a part of the Five Moms campaign, they are looking for someone who:

  • Has experience or a passion for working with teens;
  • Has past or previous involvement in teen programming or issues affecting teens;
  • Has experience working with teens and/or substance abuse;
  • Has raised awareness of cough medicine abuse in their community or is a community leader;
  • Works with teens on a daily or weekly basis a coach, teacher, guidance counselor, youth group leader, etc.;
  • Uses social media to reach parents and educate them about teen substance abuse;
  • Is involved with community organizations that center around pre-teens and teens;
  • Developed an original idea or event to educate others about cough medicine abuse; or
  • Has distributed Five Moms and/or cough medicine abuse information to their children, peers, community, etc.

For more information on how to enter the Are You the Next Five Mom? search, and for the official rules and regulations, visit To learn more about over-the-counter medicine abuse, visit

You can join them in Facebook and follow them on Twitter.

Teen Help: Parents’ Universal Resource Experts (P.U.R.E.)

With today’s society, kids have access to many different substances that can be addictive and damaging. If you suspect your child is using drugs or drinking alcohol, please seek help for them as soon as possible. Drug testing is helpful, but not always accurate.  Teen Drug use and Teen Drinking may escalate to addiction.

We get calls constantly, that a child is only smoking pot. Unfortunately in most cases, marijuana can lead to more severe drugs, and marijuana is considered an illegal drug. Smoking marijuana is damaging to the child’s body, brain and behavior. Even though marijuana is not considered a narcotic, most teens are very hooked on it. Many teens that are on prescribed medications such as Ritalin, Adderall, Strattera, Concerta, Zoloft, Prozac etc. are more at risk when mixing these medications with street drugs. It is critical you speak with your child about this and learn all the side effects.  Educating your child on the potential harm may help them to understand the dangers involved in mixing prescription drugs with street drugs. Awareness is the first step to understanding.

Alcohol is not any different with today’s teens. Like adults, some teens use the substances to escape their problems; however they don’t realize that it is not an escape but rather a deep dark hole. Some teens use substances to “fit in” with the rest of their peers – teen peer pressure. This is when a child really needs to know that they don’t need to “fit in” if it means hurting themselves. Using drug and alcohol is harming them. Especially if a teen is taking prescribed medication (refer to the above paragraph) teen drinking can be harmful. The combination can bring out the worse in a person. Communicating with your teen, as difficult as it can be, is one of the best tools we have.  Even if you think they are not listening, we hope eventually they will hear you.

If your teen is experimenting with this, please step in and get proper help through local resources. If it has extended into an addiction, it is probably time for a Residential Placement. If you feel your child is only experimenting, it is wise to start precautions early. An informed parent is an educated parent.  This can be your life jacket when and if you need the proper intervention.  Always be prepared, it can save you from rash decisions later.

A teen that is just starting to experiment with substance use or starting to become difficult; a solid short term self growth program may be very beneficial for them.  However keep in mind, if this behavior has been escalating over a length of time, the short term program may only serve as a temporary band-aid.

Drugs and Alcoholic usage is definitely a sign that your child needs help. Teen Drug Addiction and Teen Drinking is a serious problem in today’s society; if you suspect your child is using substances, especially if they are on prescribed medications, start seeking local help.  If the local resources become exhausted, and you are still experiencing difficulties, it may be time for the next step; Therapeutic Boarding School or Residential Treatment Center.

If you feel your teen is in need of further Boarding School, Military School or Program Options, please complete our Information Request Form.

The Partnership at Add Their First Celebrity Champion

As parents continue to struggle with teens experimenting with substances, Drug-Free America continues to help educate parents, teachers and everyone working with today’s children.  Today they announced their slight name change to show their solidarity to continue to partner with powerful voices that can help make a difference.  Actress and author, Melissa Gilbert (best known as Laura Ingalls on Little House on the Prairie) is their  first celebrity voice.  Read what she has to say. Melissa and her son, Michael, are pictured below.

The Partnership for a Drug-Free America Changes Name to

The Partnership at

~ Long-time nonprofit’s mission evolves; research demonstrates parents’ increased need for help and support on teen drug and alcohol issues ~

~ Actor, Author and Parent Melissa Gilbert Joins as First-Ever Celebrity Champion ~

NEW YORK, NY – October 7, 2010 – The Partnership for a Drug-Free America® announced today that it is changing its name to The Partnership at  The new name reflects the nonprofit’s commitment to serving and supporting parents and families.

The change further reflects how the organization has grown since its founding in 1986 as a prevention-focused, anti-drug advertising campaign to a reliable partner and online community for parents and families seeking guidance and support on teen drug and alcohol use.

By focusing on parents and caregivers, working at the grassroots level and embracing the power of the web to communicate and connect, the organization has evolved to fulfill its important mission to help parents prevent, intervene in and find treatment for drug and alcohol use by their children.  Parents will find deep, credible and science-based resources to help them and their families at

11 million of America’s teens and young adults are struggling with drugs or alcohol[1], yet unlike most other adolescent health issues or diseases, parents haven’t found a clear path to resources and support for teen addiction.

“When it comes to preventing or helping a child involved with drug use and drinking, already a stigmatized issue, parents are at a loss,” said Steve Pasierb, president and CEO of The Partnership at  “Over the past six years, we have created programs and resources to fill that gap and be a trustworthy, non-judgmental place to get answers and support, whether that’s online via or in their community through our grassroots education programs.”

While both parents and research point to a need for an organization like The Partnership at, the nonprofit’s first celebrity champion, Melissa Gilbert, added, “I believe that the most compelling reality is that all parents will move heaven and earth to protect their children’s health because they love their kids.”  She applauded the organization’s changes, saying, “Both as a mother and as a person who is living a life in recovery, I know firsthand what a struggle it is for both a teen or young adult in trouble and their parent who feels helpless and utterly alone. The Partnership at is here for all parents, myself included, at whatever their stage of need – from prevention to recovery – and most importantly reinforces that we are not alone.”

Embracing “Partnership” and Bringing the Concept to Life

The change is also the culmination of more than a year of parent interviews, analysis and qualitative and quantitative research. New omnibus research from The Partnership at also shows that when discovering what the organization does, an overwhelming majority of parents (94 percent) with children ages 10-17 would consider The Partnership at as valuable to parents with kids at risk of using drugs and drinking. Embracing this learning, the 24-year-old nonprofit organization preserved the known strengths and attributes of its name: the concept of a partnership with parents and families. The new name is consistent with its mission, making it more relevant to parents and explicit as to where they can find the important tools and resources that position the organization as a cause leader on this issue.

“Even with a rich history and many widely acclaimed, effective public education campaigns, our name was confusing to parents. Research showed that people assumed we were part of the government or an organization focused on drug policy. These perceptions were limiting our ability to best serve families and meet their individual needs,” added Pasierb.  “Parents also thought we focused exclusively on prevention. With resources to also help parents intervene and find treatment, we understand that while most kids don’t use drugs, many do, and far too many suffer problems or need help to overcome an addiction.”

Addiction takes a toll on families and an equally devastating toll on society. 35 million families with children ages 9-17 need help with drug and alcohol prevention[2].  “The economic impact of substance abuse is staggering,” said Patricia Russo, chairman of The Partnership at  With estimated costs to society from illicit drugs at $280 billion,[3] Russo added, “We can’t reduce the costs in the workplace due to drug and alcohol abuse and improve our global competitiveness as a nation until we better prepare and support parents in raising healthy teens, helping them to be more informed, empowered and better able to help their children.”

Gilbert, who has personally struggled with addiction and is now a parent spokesperson for the organization, added, “The burden and the responsibility for taking action on this issue falls to us, to parents. I hope that, like me, other parents will find The Partnership at as a true partner. Here for us wherever we are and whenever we need help. It is my long-term hope that I will be able to help them achieve their goals, and fewer families will struggle with the pain of addiction. For now, I want families going through the agony and confusion of dealing with addiction to know that they are not alone. We are here. I am here and I understand.”

Redesigned and Expanded Website at

Debuting with the new name is the organization’s new web portal, making it easy to navigate expanded online resources that provide answers and support at whatever point parents need help. is a user-friendly gateway to the nonprofit’s programs and resources, focused on prevention, intervention, treatment, recovery and community education.  Featuring interactive tools, compelling videos, engaging blogs, comprehensive e-books and burgeoning online communities, the new site aims to be an online ‘public square’ where parents can support, learn from and encourage one another.

# # # #

About The Partnership at

The Partnership at is a nonprofit organization that helps parents prevent, intervene in and find treatment for drug and alcohol use by their children. Bringing together renowned scientists, parent experts and communications professionals, the organization translates current research on teen behavior, addiction and treatment into easy to understand resources at  Through its nationwide PACT360 Community Education Programs, The Partnership at educates and mobilizes local community efforts to address drug threats at the grassroots level, including methamphetamine and prescription drug abuse, and also provides parent training and teen programs that help prevent teen substance abuse. The organization depends on donations from individuals, corporations, foundations and government; and it thanks SAG/AFTRA and the advertising and media industries for their ongoing generosity.

[1] 2009 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (SAMHSA)

[2] US Census 2000

[3] Volkow, ND & Li, TK (2005). Drugs and alcohol: Treating and preventing abuse, addiction, and their medical consequences. Pharmacology and Therapeutics 108, pp. 3 – 17.

Recovery Month September 2010: Addiction Hurts the Entire Family

Sadly many parents watch their teens spiral out-of-control using drugs and drinking.  Today it seems there is more accessibility as well as freedoms that teens are taking advantage of.  Worse than all of this is if your teen becomes addictedAddiction can control your life and ruin it, as well as destroy families.

Now the positive side. Year after year, National Alcohol and Drug Addiction Recovery Month (Recovery Month) witnesses tremendous success and commitment from people and organizations across the country. For more than 20 years, the campaign has joined together millions of people to celebrate recovery and educate communities about addiction.

This year is no different.  Get ready for September 2010 when Recovery Month is back and ready to reach into your community and make a difference in lives.

in South Florida on September 25th, Family Fun Day sponsored by South Florida Behavioral Health Network/ Concept House starts at 10:00am.  Located at Morningside Park in Miami, there will be a BBQ and lots of fun with games, sack races, food and more.  Contact Martha Morales at for more information.

Find your local event for Recovery Month or have one!  Put your zip code in the box on Recovery Month page. Click here. Come back here to watch the quick and powerful video below.

Make a difference in someone’s life today.  Download the 2010 Recovery Kit today.  Click here.

Follow Recovery Month on Twitter and join their group on Facebook.


Read more.