Faith Leaders Explore Drug Abuse, Prevention

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Northeast Delta Human Services Authority provides Faith Partnership Readiness Training focused on integrating churches and their congregations

NE Delta HSA's Faith Partnerships logo.

We have an amazing group of diverse faith leaders in this area, and we need their help to reach people by combining our efforts to better serve and support our communities.

Dozens of northeast Louisiana faith leaders will gather with community leaders, prevention and recovery specialists and others to jump-start a faith-based initiative focused on avoiding significant community addictions while lovingly assisting individuals with addictions.

“We have too many people in northeastern Louisiana hurting for too many reasons, and they resort to alcohol, opioids, street drugs and illicit use of other prescription medications to seek comfort,” said Dr. Monteic A. Sizer, executive director of Northeast Delta Human Services Authority, the host organization providing the Faith Partnership Readiness Training. “We have an amazing group of diverse faith leaders in this area, and we need their help to reach people by combining our efforts to better serve and support our communities.”

The program will feature Sizer and Drew Brooks, a nationally recognized faith-based prevention and treatment specialist and executive director of Faith Partners. The event is scheduled to start at 9 a.m. at Walk in the Word Family Church, 1201 Stubbs Ave, Monroe, LA 71201. Breakfast will be served at 8:30 a.m. For more information, contact Dr. Avius Carroll at 318-362-5230 or Avius.Carroll@la.gov.

Brooks said Faith Partners takes an evidence-based intervention approach, one the group has used in nearly 600 congregational teams with about 22 different faith traditions in more than 25 states. Brooks has been a part of church programs all of his life, and he has focused on faith-based prevention and treatment remedies for more than 25 years. “The most successful church and community programs include a full process of initiating, developing and sustaining congregational addiction teams to a fully mature institutionalized ministry and service to the community,” said Brooks.

The event, which is open to the public, will include Northeast Delta HSA representatives, pastors and ministry leaders as well as community representatives. When the program is completed, Sizer said participants will have a better sense of the importance of the role of religion and spirituality in prevention and recovery support, will know about the Faith Partners approach to build prevention and recovery support teams, will be able to recognize the role readiness plays in developing the capacity of the faith community to address substance use disorders and other addictions. Participants will explore how to build community capacity and strategies and immediately put some of those skills to work.

“This event has next steps built in,” added Sizer. “What we’ll be doing at Walk in the Word is only the start. We will achieve results that will have a positive impact by thoroughly involving faith leaders in this important work.”

About Northeast Delta Human Services Authority (NE Delta HSA)
NE Delta HSA manages the operation of community-based programs that improve the quality of life for individuals with major mental illness, developmental disabilities and addictive disorders. NE Delta HSA accomplishes this by utilizing a nationally recognized integrative approach that identifies and addresses behavioral and primary health care needs.

NE Delta HSA is devoted to delivering programs and services that encourage citizens of Northeast Louisiana to reach their full human potential. Three tenets guide these efforts: excellent customer service, greater access to services and competent, quality care. We serve Caldwell, East Carroll, West Carroll, Ouachita, Lincoln, Madison, Franklin, Morehouse, Jackson, Tensas, Richland and Union Parishes.

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Will Sutton
Northeast Delta Human Services Authority
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