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Addiction and Poverty Models
Research findings increasingly show a strong link between addiction and poverty.
Yet few resources are available to help addicts, alcoholics and their families move toward intervention, treatment, and recovery. Additionally, community professionals often do not have the resources to carry out effective prevention and public policy campaigns. Without access to a full continuum of substance abuse resources, a family’s ability to transition out of poverty is destined for failure.
Recognizing that health and wellness are essential components in breaking a cycle of generational poverty, SPSARV has made addressing the connection between addiction and poverty a priority. To achieve this, we are partnering with two leading community-based institutions, the Hoover BCD Empowerment Center and the Circles Initiative of North Carolina, to provide church leaders with effective ministry models, best practices, and practical tools to respond to the interconnectedness of addiction and poverty.
Better Community Developers Project Addiction and Poverty Response Model
The Theresa Hoover Better Community Developers Inc. (BCD), a pioneer initiative of the Arkansas-based National Community Developers Program, launched the Empowerment Center, a holistic community ministry that serves people in low-income communities as they struggle to gain freedom from their addictions. With over 90% of its clients living in or near poverty, the Empowerment Center offers community-based prevention, intervention, treatment, and recovery services and public policy advocacy, which tackle pressing social issues with an emphasis on alcohol and other drug addictions. By providing comprehensive care and resources, Hoover BCD, Inc. provides people with addictions (who often lack access to in-patient treatment facilities) compassionate services to overcome their addictions.
Working in partnership with Hoover BCD, Inc., SPSARV will provide local churches with training and mentoring sessions on responding to addiction and poverty. Through on-site experiential trainings, congregational ministries will gain a firsthand look into launching addiction ministries in impoverished communities. Mentoring relationships will include technical assistance and troubleshooting on dealing with the challenges faced by congregational ministries.
The Empowerment Center will be a tremendous resource and model to the general church in helping to strengthen the capacity of United Methodist and ecumenical partner groups who are developing substance abuse ministries. If your congregation is interested in participating in the Hoover Empowerment Center training and mentoring sessions, please contact SPSARV at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Circles Initiative of North Carolina Addiction and Poverty Response Model
SPSARV has joined forces with the Western North Carolina annual conference-related RFD Community Development Corporation, the Iowa-based Move the Mountain Leadership Center, and Pfeiffer University to support the Circles Initiative for North Carolina, a program fighting generational poverty. The Circles Initiative model employs a holistic approach that places high priority on ensuring that health and wellness are integral aspects of ending poverty. This approach emphasizes the importance of working with individuals and families to overcome the disease of addiction or else efforts to end poverty will be threatened.
Our involvement in the Circles model supports GBGM’s lead response in the denomination’s “Ministry with the Poor” quadrennial focus, contributing to a comprehensive board-wide strategy. SPSARV will provide Circles with resources on prevention, intervention, treatment, recovery support, in addition to public policy advocacy tools and strategies. For more information on the Circles model, please visit www.movethemountain.org.