In my job as a judicial officer I am confronted with the effects of substance abuse on a daily basis. According to the National Institute of Health, “[criminal] offenders have rates of substance abuse and dependence that are more than four times that of the general population.” That same report recognizes that treatment works, is cost-effective and can help end the vicious cycle of drug abuse and criminal recidivism. As a Delaware citizen, I am distressed knowing that at least 286 Delawareans died from suspected heroin overdoses in 2018. Nearly 300 people who did not need to die.
One of the reasons I agreed to join the TRIAD board is my belief that TRIAD plays a vital role in addressing these problems. TRIAD offers a myriad of services—counseling, outreach and education—that help us combat the ravages of substance abuse disorders like alcoholism and drug addiction.
The outreach services provided by TRIAD help when people have no idea where to go for help. I, personally, have referred parents to TRIAD for help in finding treatment for loved ones. Many people are not educated on where to look for help. TRIAD can and does help.
As stated by one of my mentors, Father Bill Hultberg, when you “scratch one addiction, you discover 2 or 3 more underneath.” This is where TRIAD’s counseling services become so important. Sobriety may be the first step in recovery but staying sober means doing the work, engaging in 12 step programs and seeking help from trained therapists. At present, TRIAD has three full-time counselors to provide services to recovering persons.
Education is vital to addressing substance abuse. Ignorance kills. TRIAD hosts a number of free educational seminars each year. Some of the seminars addressed important topics like relapse prevention, recovery on the college campus and the spiritual solution to addiction. In addition, TRIAD sponsors the Wholehearted Living Program for women in recovery.
TRIAD needs help from the community to continue its efforts. TRIAD alone can make only a small dent. But with the help of others, TRIAD will be able to expand its efforts and help even more people suffering from alcoholism and drug addiction. Please join us.
Thanks to Ray Colletti for filming our event. To contact Ray please visit raycollettiphotography.com or call (302) 781-2140.
This year’s Annual Breakfast was the most successful ever, both in terms of number of attendees and amount of money raised. Held on Wednesday May 15 at the Wilmington Country Club, over 160 people came to support TRIAD. Executive Director, Gillian Timon, spoke about TRIAD’s progress; Sister Margie gave the blessing; our Board Chairman, Eric Davis, honored Mike Kelly from McCarter & English; Board member, Eric Robinson, shared his inspiring story of recovery; our keynote speaker, Lieutenant Governor Bethany Hall-Long, spoke about Behavioral Health in Delaware; and Mike Kelly shared some very witty remarks to close out the event. Thanks to all who attended!
April is Alcohol Awareness Month. And this weekend is Alcohol-Free Weekend, April 5-7, 2019, designed to raise public awareness about the use of alcohol and how it may be affecting individuals, families, businesses and our communities. During Alcohol-Free Weekend, all Americans are invited to engage in three alcohol-free days. Those individuals or families who experience difficulty or discomfort in this 72-hour experiment are urged to contact local Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) and Al-Anon to learn more about alcohol use disorder and its early symptoms. Or call TRIAD at 302-655-1153. We can help you from alcoholism and towards a healthy, productive life.
Last night we had another enjoyable Wholehearted Living Program for the ladies from Attack Addiction, Gaudenzia, and Burgess Beginnings. The theme for the evening was Cultivating Calm and Stillness – Letting Go of Anxiety as a Lifestyle. One of our activities was to write down our anxieties and place them in a Letting Go box. We also had a meditation exercise, bubble blowing, and smelling essential oils. The ladies really seemed to enjoy it!
On Wednesday we were pleased to host Sister Margie who spoke about the Spiritual Solution to Addiction. She drew a huge crowd – it was standing room only! Her talk was passionate and informative. If you would like to read the presentation it is attached here.
At its inception more than 40 years ago, TRIAD was more of a place than a program.
The place was an old row house at 1104 North Adams Street that had once been the home of Trinity Episcopal Church’s Sunday School. In the summer of 1975, when I had just returned from treatment, it stood virtually abandoned.
Jobless and fretting about what the future might hold for me and my family, I went to see the Rev. Robert M. Smith, the rector of Trinity. A couple of months shy of my 45th birthday, I was shattered, physically, mentally, and spiritually. I could not even bring myself to walk down Orange Street, which I had looked down on from my paneled corner office in the old News Journal only a few months before.
Bob was my pastor. He was also my good friend. I had been his senior warden during the final months of my drinking and drugging. He seemed to know a lot about alcoholism. When he was rector of the English-language Episcopal Church in Tokyo, he told me once, the AA hotline rang in his office.
“Why don’t you set up in Edmund du Pont’s old office on the third floor of 1104?” Bob asked. “Take your time. Think things over. Figure out what you can do to help, what the Church can do to help.”
I took him up on the offer, and with help from family and friends lugged some of my stuff up those two steep flights to my new digs — two rooms with bath! — atop an otherwise vacant building. As I undertook a needs assessment of addiction recovery services in the Wilmington area, I found that it could get pretty lonely up there,
For company and support, I started going around the corner to the Men’s Limen House for coffee with my friend Howard Cropper, then the assistant manager of that facility. I would also drop in at the 1212 Club, then located at the Corner of 12th and Market Streets. I drew comfort and strength just being in the company of other recovering people.
I had an idea. There was a small room in the front of the building at 1104 North Adams. I asked Bob if I could have the use of it for a kind of resource center where people could come to learn more about alcoholism and drug addiction, grab a cup of coffee, and, if they chose, talk to a recovering person.
“Take the whole building,” Bob said. ”Everything but the annex at the rear. We still use that for classes.”
That was the beginning of what became a busy drop-in center and the hub of TRIAD’s expanding work. We made free professional counseling available. Several 12 Step meetings were started in the rooms upstairs and some still exist today. The center has been closed for years now, but the recovering community needs something like it. There is plenty of program in the Wilmington area, but very little place.
We are very grateful for the generosity of the members of ValleyPoint Church in Glen Mills. The church – which one of our counselors, Mallory Giles, attends – selected TRIAD as one of four charities to be recipients of the funds raised as part of their Christmas Initiative. The church raised over $100,000! In January their pastor, Reverend Eric Koehler (pictured here), presented TRIAD with a check for $26,000. It will be put to very good use in our counseling program. Thank you so much!
TRIAD is proud to announce the arrival of Herman Ortez as the latest addition to our counseling team. Herman is a licensed professional mental health therapist (LPCMH) and has over 15 years experience treating substance abuse and mental health disorders. He previously worked at AIDS Delaware, and has experience in both inpatient and outpatient settings. Herman earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Human Services and Master’s Degree in Mental Health Counseling in Springfield College, Wilmington , DE, and has a Doctoral Degree in Education from Wilmington University. Welcome Herman!
Last night the Wholehearted Living Program team hosted a holiday party for ladies from the recovery houses of Attack Addiction, Gaudenzia and Burgess Beginnings. There were holiday decorations, music, food and a sock exchange party which all made for a fun evening!
TRIAD has been very instrumental in my recovery. The counselors share their inner wealth of knowledge on the pitfalls of this potentially fatal disease. They remind us that we can conquer it and proceed with full contentment in life - and that we deserve it!
I love how much TRIAD puts the time in for help I need. This has saved my life not once but more than that. My counselor has been there for me since day one and is still there for me.
I want everyone to know how grateful I am for her and the rest of the team at TRIAD