Our Opinion: Recovery Fest offers resources, celebrates hope

Is your family touched in some way by alcohol abuse or addiction?

If so, you are hardly alone. Alcohol abuse affects about 20 percent of men and 10 percent of women in the United States, according to the website MedicineNet.com.

And the impact typically radiates beyond the abuser to family members, friends and co-workers.

The good news is treatment of alcohol abuse and addiction — a disease known as alcoholism — can be treated through the process of recovery.

To celebrate recovery, the second annual Capital Area Recovery Fest will be held from 2-4 p.m. Sunday at the McClung Park pavilion in Jefferson City.

Organizers say the event also provides a non-threatening environment for anyone who wants to learn more about the resources available for people addicted to alcohol or drugs.

The event will include music, food, games, fellowship and testimonials from people in recovery. Associations involved in treatment and recovery will distribute free educational materials and vendors will be on site selling their products.

Sponsors of the festival are ACT Missouri and the Missouri Recovery Network (MRN). Co-sponsors are the state Department of Corrections and its Division of Probation and Parole; Cole County Circuit 19 Drug Court; Pathways Community Behavioral Health Care; and Preferred Family Health Care.

Chuck Daugherty, executive director of ACT, says the festival is held during September’s observance of National Alcohol and Drug Addiction Recovery Month. “We want to celebrate that people are living in recovery,” he said. “They are examples that there is life after treatment.

Added Ron Griffin, interim director of MRN, “the festival is an excellent opportunity to visit with people who have addiction issues and to learn that treatment and recovery are available.”

Substance abuse and addiction are grim realities that create marital, legal, financial and social problems. And the negative consequences extend and impact countless other people.

Recovery Fest celebrates hope and acknowledges a better life awaits those who commit to a program of recovery.

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