A 2019 telephone survey revealed that more than 60 percent of Walker County residents were not familiar with local treatment options for those struggling with opioid abuse.
Representatives of the Recovery Resource Center and the Recovery Organization of Support Specialists (ROSS) shared information about how to get help from their respective organizations in the second week of "The Journey Series," a free virtual series on addiction and recovery.
Both Stephanie Schilling, a certified recovery support specialist for the Recovery Resource Center, and Paige Britton, a certified recovery support specialist for ROSS, emphasized that treatment is not one size fits all. Both are living in recovery.
The Recovery Resource Center website lists a range of levels of care: early intervention, outpatient, partial hospitalization, inpatient, inpatient detoxification and medication assisted treatment (such as methadone and Suboxone).
"We're able to do the assessments and put them in the right level of care, refer them to a detox if they need that or a residential if they need that. That way it is started on a foundation of 'This person is an individual. What are their needs?'" said Schilling, who recently began working within the criminal justice system in Walker County.
Schilling estimated that she has worked with approximately 20 clients whose addiction has lead to an arrest. Four have gone to treatment with the others going through the process.
The Recovery Resource Center is located at Cooper Green in Birmingham. Its purpose is to simplify the process of navigating the treatment system.
The Recovery Resource Center offers assessments, referrals and consultations. Individuals who call 205-458-3377 will be connected to a peer support specialist who will follow them throughout the treatment process.
Individuals who are not insured will be directed to a state-funded facility, Schilling said.
Its website is http://recoveryresourcejeffco.com.
ROSS has a 24/7 helpline at 844-307-1760 staffed by certified peer support specialists. Transportation support to treatment is available.
Some of the services offered through ROSS include screening/intake, crisis support, peer-led support groups, relapse prevention planning and more.
Its website is https://ross4u.org.
"I hope I can help someone else find that recovery that I hold so important to myself," Britton said.
Schilling and Britton were joined by Barbara Brown Medders, coordinator of the Bankhead House and Heritage Center and a family member of one individual who died of an overdose and another who is living in recovery.
"The Journey Series," a collaboration of the Recovery Ministries of the Episcopal Diocese of Alabama and Walker County Health Action Partnership as well as numerous other state and local partners, will be offered virtually each Thursday through Oct. 8 at 2:30 p.m. and 3:35 p.m.
To register or view past sessions, visit www.walkerrecoverymap.org/journey-series.