Those who read my words and know me understand how I like to speak about the progress we as returning citizens are making in support of those who follow us back into community. There has been progress! I am listing three examples which all will learn more about in the coming months. Mark and Mark have joined forces. As the picture suggests Mark Person and Mark Renick are working together.
4 Years in a Row for Recover Out Loud It was a cold and windy Friday night in February in Idaho Falls (seems like they all are from my experience). Yet I was honored to attend such a nice event where the community comes together for those who come out of incarceration and struggle with issues dealing with addiction. Congrats to Stephanie Taylor – Silva for being the force behind this yearly event.
Idaho Falls February 25, 2022 The date for this event has been changed to COVID as so many events in our world these days. It should be a must evening for those in Eastern Idaho who have been incarcerated and/or struggle with addiction. It is a yearly event. This year it will be held at the Bennion Student Union Building on the campus of Idaho State University in Idaho Falls.
Are you ready for the new year Idahoans? I hope so because it should be a great one for returning citizens and those who love and support them! In 2021 with the burden of COVID we made great strides! Just a few of those include: Expanded Cookies for Corrections program. More institutions this year and more than 200,000 distributed New board members and staff for New Hope Christian Ministries (our parent 503C3 organization).
Christmas 2021 and a very Merry Christmas to all! Please take the time to remember what we celebrate this season. It is the birth of our Savior. Please do not be timid in that belief. Should you be unsure…. consider a dialogue with a loving God who wants a personal relationship with you! The theme of this month’s blog is to encourage you to become active in supporting those who have been incarcerated.
Each Christmas season has familiar traditions which we all can identify. For me one of the best has always been Cookies for Max! The tradition began inside the walls of the Idaho Maximum Security Institution (IMSI) where cookies from all over the Treasure Valley were gathered and distributed by religious volunteers a few days before Christmas. Those who live inside Max for the most part are restricted to their cells 23 hours a day for seven days a week.
People who have heard me speak know I always address the need to form partnerships with those who can speak to the needs of the folks returning to our communities from incarceration. One strong group should be those who face the challenge of addiction in the past or current. Several of us had the chance to connect with 35 other states in Las Vegas a few days ago. As usual Idaho lags behind the efforts of other states.
RECOVERY MONTH September 2021 Treasure Valley Idaho Each year we rally in different venues, locations & planned events to spread the work about the process of working toward quality recovery practices. This year will be more of the same. Need information on the national statistics? Check out SAMASA We are 39 million strong of those in long-term recovery from addiction so be proud. Some events to consider locally include:
Certainly, those who know me or listen to me at meetings, in person or sometimes on the radio that one of the themes that I share is the need to build coalitions. We have been trying to do that for over six years in the Treasure Valley. I do believe we are making progress. An event happened on July 29th that addresses the issue of importance for this effort to be statewide.
There are times when you need to check just where we are and how much things have changed especially for the better. Last Saturday was one of those times for me. The photo was a tribute to my friend Mark Person (photo with Josh Tewalt /Idaho Department of Corrections Director). The event supported Mark for five years work in support of individuals returning to community from incarceration. We ARE making progress in the work to mainstream issues for those who are making the effort to face their past and become solid members of the state of Idaho.