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Odyssey House Offers New Peer-Run Services for People in Early Recovery

October 8, 2010: Odyssey House, a non-profit substance abuse treatment, mental health provider and supportive housing agency, has been awarded a three-year, $1.2 million grant by the federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) to fund enhanced services for individuals and families in recovery from alcohol and substance abuse. The new program, called the Odyssey House Recovery Oriented Care System (OHROCS), will deliver recovery support services using the evidence-based Therapeutic Community peer mentoring model that includes coaching, personal recovery plans, peer-to-peer support groups and incentives.

The goal of the OHROCS program is to support people in the early stages of recovery. Volunteer mentors (who receive a small stipend) are paired with individual mentees and work closely with them to achieve the recovery goals defined in the mentees’ recovery plan. Peer support practices that engage clients in the recovery process as they transition to independent, sober living are proven to reduce drug use during and after treatment and improve social connectedness, quality of life, and self-image.

Dr. Peter Provet, president of Odyssey House said today: “A peer support system that builds on techniques individuals learn in treatment offers an exciting opportunity to extend the reach of recovery services to where people live and work.

“With this new program, people new to recovery will have access to a network of experienced peers who have successfully navigated the transition from treatment to independent, sober living. While this service is not new to Odyssey House – our alumnae group has long offered valuable support to people leaving treatment – the additional resources afforded by this grant, such as a paid stipend, will help us recruit and keep individuals who have a lot to offer. Treatment is already a bargain compared to the significant costs attributed to untreated addiction, from loss of income, increased use of social and medical services, and the high price of criminal justice services. By extending our services with this low-cost recovery network we will provide the taxpayer with even greater savings.”

The OHROCS program will serve 330 individuals in early recovery and will be based at Odyssey House Outpatient Services, 953 Southern Blvd., Bronx, New York.

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