Archive for the ‘News’ Category

2017 Pat Ganter Scholarship

Tassel Hanging on Pile of Textbooks2017 Pat Ganter Scholarship
Scholarship Deadline: Friday, April 21, 2017

Scholarship Information

The Council on Chemical Abuse is pleased to announce the 2017 Pat Ganter Scholarship. This $1,000 scholarship is available to a Berks County High School Senior who is active in substance abuse prevention in their school or community.

The student must be planning to pursue an education in one of the following areas: human services, behavioral health, social work, addictions studies, criminal justice, or psychology. The student must explain in a biographical statement how he or she plans to use this education to work with the addicted population.

Application Requirements

All applicants must provide the following information:
  • A completed application form
  • Two typed letters of reference (from teachers/school personnel)
  • A high school transcript (unofficial will be accepted)
  • A typed 1,000-word or less biographical statement composed by you, in which you discuss
    the following:

    • Your educational goals
    • Any community involvement (volunteer or service activities), special contributions you take pride in, or volunteer positions that promote community well-being or the well-being of individuals
    • Specific areas of personal or academic growth and achievement in high school that you want to share with the committee (including awards and honors)
    • How your educational paths supports your life goals and reflects your values

Scholarship Background:

Patricia Ganter, as a dedicated employee of the Council on Chemical Abuse and Caron Treatment Centers, was recognized by colleagues for her commitment to the field of addiction and recovery.

In her role as Administrative Assistant with these drug and alcohol organizations, Patricia joined a high degree of professionalism with a compassion for those challenged by addiction. With her optimistic demeanor, Patricia will long be remembered for her steadfast belief in the power of recovery.

Scholarship Deadline and Submission Information:

All scholarship applications and materials must be received by Friday, April 21, 2017.  Applicants can Apply Online or download an application and mail materials to the following address:
Council on Chemical Abuse – Pat Ganter Scholarship – 601 Penn Street – Suite 600 – Reading, PA 19601

EVENT: High with HOPE in Berks

High with Hope in BerksHigh with HOPE in Berks 
Wednesday, February 22, 2017
6:00 p.m.  – 8:00 p.m.
Alvernia University, Francis Hall Theatre
400 Saint Bernardine Street, Reading, PA 19607

Tara Handron wrote and performs her one-woman show, Drunk with Hope in Chicago, to help with outreach and education about substance abuse. Tara created this adaptation, High with Hope in Berks, to specifically address the needs and issues we face here in Berks County. Watch a preview below and CLICK HERE for more information about this event.

NEWS: Berks Recognized by State for “Warm Handoff” Efforts

2-14-17-warm-hand-off-press-conferenceFor Overdose Survivors, “Warm Handoff” into Treatment is Crucial Next Step on Road to Recovery from Addiction

READING, PA – Acting Secretary of Drug and Alcohol Programs Jennifer Smith and Physician General Dr. Rachel Levine today discussed the Wolf Administration’s efforts to battle the opioid epidemic during a visit to Reading Hospital, where they highlighted the importance of the “warm handoff” protocol in getting overdose survivors directly into treatment for addiction.

“With the number of overdoses increasing in Pennsylvania, we must focus on first reversing the heroin/opioid overdose with naloxone, and then when survivors are revived, getting them into immediate treatment,” said Smith. “A warm handoff is a way to encourage overdose survivors usually transported to emergency rooms for observation to agree to enter treatment.”

It is critical, said Smith, to get those suffering from substance abuse disorder into treatment. She said the number of deaths from heroin/opioid overdoses in the commonwealth was more than 3,500 in 2015 and is expected to be much higher in 2016.

Governor Tom Wolf’s first focus was to get naloxone into the hands of local and state police and other first responders to save lives. As part of those life-saving efforts, Dr. Levine signed a standing order for naloxone that is available at pharmacies or from the Department of Health website. Anyone can use Dr. Levine’s standing order to obtain naloxone.

“We are working now on the second step on the road to recovery from addiction: warm handoff,” said Smith. “Berks County and Reading Hospital have done a great job in getting overdose survivors to enter treatment and Dr. Chuck Barbera can provide a model for the best way to do it.”

To see the full press release please click HERE.

CLICK HERE to see the article from the Reading Eagle.

“Your Bridge to Addiction Resources” – Accessing Services for Youth

Accessing Services for Youth | Meet Melani Calabria

According to the National Center on Substance Abuse, over 10 million high school students have used addictive substances including tobacco, alcohol, marijuana or cocaine; 1 in 5 meet the medical criteria for addiction. Accessing treatment for addiction is an inclusive process which includes an assessment to determine appropriate level of care. Treatment Access Services Center (TASC) is the licensed central unit intake provider that provides assessments to help youth get the professional help that they need to address their substance use disorder. Lead Clinical Evaluator, Melani Calabria says that TASC provides public funding for youth to enter into treatment who do not have their own private insurance. Melanie states young people who are referred to TASC for a drug and alcohol assessment usually do not feel they have a problem. Melanie takes time to formulate a bond with the youth so they feel comfortable sharing their alcohol and drug history. Malanie says in-patient treatment care is more readily available for youth than it is for adults and she works collaboratively with parents, schools, and youth-serving programs and agencies to ensure youth have received the appropriate services they need. Melanie says appointments to schedule assessments are available Monday –Friday between 8:30 a.m. and 4:00 p.m.

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“Your Bridge to Addiction Resources” – Kutztown Strong

Kutztown Strong | Meet Guidance Counselor, Andrew Brett

A rapid response to situations impacting our communities can often result in a long-lasting effect on the community. In 2014, Guidance Counselor, Andrew Brett and dozens of residents in the Kutztown Borough formed Kutztown Strong formed to address the problems in the community which were contributing to the use opioids among youth. Community members concerned about the health and wellness of the young people assembled at Kutztown High School desiring to make a difference.

Andrew states that the group of individuals includes business owners, law enforcement, school officials, students as well as local non-profit agencies. The group has implemented several evidence-based programs for grades K – 12 to help youth make good decisions and provide education and awareness. Kutztown Strong also developed its own student survey, which is disseminated annually to determine if there the implementation of the programs have urged youth to reduce or refrain from using drugs.

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NEWS: Extreme Danger Posed by Carfentanil

pa-dohThrough its partners, the Pennsylvania Department of Health (PADOH) has been made aware of the second known and confirmed death in the commonwealth from the use of carfentanil.

What is Carfentanil?
Carfentanil is an extremely potent fentanyl analog (synthetic opioid). Designed in 1974, carfentanil was previously used exclusively for veterinary use with large animals and is not approved for use in humans, as it has been shown to be 100 times more potent than fentanyl in animal studies. Carfentanil and other fentanyl analogues present a serious risk to public safety, first responder, medical, treatment and laboratory personnel. These substances can come in several forms, including powder, blotter paper, tablets, patch and spray. Some forms can be absorbed through the skin or accidentally inhaled.

Read more about the dangers of Carfentanil on the Department of Health website HERE >>>

“Your Bridge to Addiction Resources” – Drug Treatment Court: An Alternative to Incarceration

Drug Treatment Court: An Alternative to Incarceration

For the past 18 years, Jorge Acevedo has worked at Pennsylvania Counseling Services as a Drug and Alcohol Counselor.  Jorge provides therapeutic counseling, support, and referrals to individuals seeking a pathway to a better way of living.   Jorge also represents Pennsylvania Counseling Services as a treatment provider for individuals participating in Drug Treatment Court, a diversionary program which provides intensive supervision and treatment services to those individuals who have criminal charges for crimes related to their addiction.  Drug Treatment Court provides a structure and direction to its participants in hopes of encouraging participants to make lifestyle changes.  Participation in the programs ranges from 12 – 18 months, although Jorge states, its can be longer depending upon an individual’s motivation to follow direction and maintain compliance with program expectations. Jorge believes Drug Treatment Court can benefit many individuals and gave an example of a recent graduate who was able to get her criminal record expunged due to successfully fulfilling the requirements of Drug Treatment Court.

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NEWS: Monthly Email List

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Sign up today to start receiving our monthly email which includes news from the Council on Chemical Abuse, upcoming events, employment opportunities, trainings and more!

CLICK HERE to see upcoming events

CLICK HERE to see current employment opportunities

NEWS: Treatment Options for Berks County

web-tctc-1Beginning on July 1, 2016, the Council on Chemical Abuse contracted with Teen Challenge Training Center in Reherersburg, PA, for a short-term (up to 28 days) men’s residential drug and alcohol treatment program.  This program differs from Teen Challenge’s typical long-term faith-based program.  Teen Challenge seeks to enter into affiliations with Community Care Behavioral Health (Berks County’s Medicaid behavioral health managed care partner), private insurance companies, as well as, other Single County Authorities across Pennsylvania for this service.

Beginning on January 1, 2017, the Council on Chemical Abuse contracted with Teen Challenge Training Center in Reherersburg, PA for the provision of non-hospital detoxification for adult males. This service will be available soon. Teen Challenge seeks to also expand its affiliations with other public and private funding entities.

CLICK HERE to read more about the short-term residential treatment with Teen Challenge.

For more information about Treatment please CLICK HERE.

“Your Bridge to Addiction Resources” – Common Ground Recovery Community

Common Ground Recovery Community

The faith-based community – more specifically – churches, have a long-standing history of providing space to community-based groups in an effort to allow individuals representative of different backgrounds, groups, and interests to meet, fellowship and help one another.  So, when Common Ground Ministries got started in 2009 within the structure and framework of Atonement Lutheran Church, it appeared to be a perfect fit.  Speaking with Tom Scornavacchi, he states Common ground Ministries provides educational speaker series, fellowship opportunities, safe space, as well as referral and support for individuals new to recovery and beyond.  Common Ground Ministries are currently in two locations – Atonement Lutheran Church in Wyomissing and Holy Trinity Church in Reading.  Tom says the work he enjoys the work he does and finds it to be incredibly miraculous in energizing ways.