In this month’s issue of Recovery Talk we’re pleased to introduce you to one of the newest RCOs to spring up in New York State — Friends of Recovery – Putnam.

 What is FOR-Putnam’s mission?

Friends of Recovery- Putnam is dedicated to promoting policies and practices supporting a vision of recovery from addiction.  Like FOR -NY, FOR-Putnam’s mission is to demonstrate the power and promise of recovery from substance use disorders, and the value recovery provides to our community.

What communities does it service?

FOR-Putnam serves all municipalities in Putnam County including Brewster, Patterson, Putnam Lake, Carmel, Lake Carmel, Mahopac, Putnam Valley, Cold Spring and Garrison.

What can you tell us about addiction and recovery in Putnam County?

Putnam County, like the rest of NY and the nation, is losing community members of all ages and demographics to the current epidemic.  Since 2012 we have lost 74 individuals, more than ¾ of those to mixed intoxication.  We have a strong and growing network of prevention, treatment and recovery supports here in Putnam County.  FOR-Putnam has begun collaborating with our community partners to effect positive change.  Our members are people in long term recovery, people effected by their family members substance use disorder, and allies of those in recovery.

What can you tell us about FOR-Putnam’s events and activities to date?

Since our inception on March 7th we have participated in the following activities:

  • In May members of FOR-Putnam spoke at the Putnam County Public Hearing on mental health and substance use issues in our community. Three members gave testimony on what the needs or gaps in service are from their point of view as people in long term recovery.
  • In June FOR-Putnam and our community partners participated in the June 20th MARCH4RECOVERY, during which 20 people marched to our statue of Sybil Luddington a historic figure in our county history whose plight was a call to action similar to our call to action to treatment addiction as a public health issue and to let people know recovery is possible.
  • In July, Linda Dahl, a FOR-Putnam member spoke at Senator Gillibrand’s press conference about the federal legislation she and Senator McCain drafted restricting opioid prescriptions to 7 days for acute pain.
  • Also in July, members participated in the “Our Stories Have Power Training” presented at our monthly meeting.

 What can you tell us about FOR-Putnam’s coming events or activities?

  • As part of International Overdose Awareness Day (August 31st), FOR-Putnam (in partnership with the Prevention Council of Putnam and the Putnam CTC Coalition) will co-sponsor a HOPE AND HEALING Memorial Candlelight Vigil. We were invited to participate by a local mom who lost her only son to an opioid overdose.
  • We’re also co-hosting a screening of the new documentary, “Reversing the Stigma,” at the Carmel Cinema on September 14th at 7pm.

How can members of the community learn more and/or become involved with FOR-Putnam?

Anyone interested in joining FOR-Putnam can email us at [email protected] or attend one of our monthly meeting which are held on the second Tuesday of each month at The Prevention Council of Putnam offices located at 67 Gleneida Avenue in Carmel, NY 10512 from 5:30pm-6:30pm.

For additional information including contacts and social media links, click here.

Thank you to FOR-Putnam’s Jon Cassidy and Donna Lockwood for taking the time to share this information with us and for all you’re doing to build and support recovery in Putnam County!