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Anti-Drug Coalition Spreading the Word to help Stop Abuse

The Sumner County Anti-Drug Coalition has lined up a series of educational events for the month of September, which is National Recovery Month.

"Substance use disorders impact individuals and families without regard to their race, ethnicity, socioeconomic, educational, or spiritual background. It's a pervasive problem in every Tennessee community and ours is certainly no exception," said Justin Sweatman-Weaver, Director of the Sumner County Anti-Drug Coalition.

The Sumner County Anti-Drug Coalition, which this year celebrates its 10thanniversary, strives to bring together partners from all parts of the community -- from business owners and educators to treatment providers and faith-based leaders -- to address the issue of substance abuse at all levels.

"For so long prevention, treatment, and recovery were in silos and operated without much cross-over; perhaps even with some rivalry. The same was true for addiction and mental illness," said Sweatman-Weaver, "But what we know now is that all of these efforts are most successful when working together."

In recognition of National Recovery Month, the Sumner County Anti-Drug Coalition has arranged a series of opportunities for community members to learn more about the issue of substance abuse and available community resources.

September 1: The coalition kicked off Recovery Month by addressing students at Portland High School about the impact of addiction on families and the community agencies that provide support.

September 6: Gallatin Mayor Paige Brown presented a Recovery Month Proclamation the Recovery Court of Sumner County and the Coalition at the regularly scheduled city council meeting 6 p.m. at City Hall.

September 8: Members of the faith community and local treatment and recovery providers met at Long Hollow Baptist Church to discuss integrating recovery into local congregations.

September 12: Motivational Speaker Mike Smith inspired students from all Sumner County high schools to be their best self and change their community at the Josten's education event. The coalition will sponsor a prevention project for each school.

September 14: The coalition will present statewide trends on youth substance abuse and make a case for prevention at the regional legislative roundtable hosted by Mothers Against Drunk Driving.

September 20: The coalition will host a Victim Impact Panel in the Sumner County General Session Courtroom for adults and youth who have been charged with impaired driving.

September 24: The Sheriff's Office and local partners will host a Children's Safety Fair at the Gallatin Civic Center. The coalition will have an interactive exhibit with prevention, treatment, and recovery information.

September 27: At the monthly Coalition meeting, Steven Shates, of Tennessee's Project Lifeline will share recovery resources that are available throughout Sumner County.

Additional information about each event can be found at the Coalition's Community Calendar at

During National Recovery Month, the Sumner County Anti-Drug Coalition reminds everyone that prevention works, treatment is effective, and people can and do recover. If you or a loved one is struggling with substance use, contact the Tennessee Redline at 1-800-889-9787 or visit the coalition's resource directory at

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