The Western District Coordinating Council recently brought together district partners from a variety of sectors (law enforcement, legislature, health care, community providers, etc.) to share ideas and solutions to address this growing opioid problem.
One of the highlights of this forum was a back to work program that has been implemented in Oxford County. A significant part of the Western Maine Addiction Recovery Initiative is Project Save ME, where people who are in active substance use can go to any police department in Oxford County and ask for help.
Many aspects of Project Save ME have contributed to its success, including trained recovery coaches, area social service agencies and a partnership with C.N. Brown. Early on, C.N. Brown noticed that substance use disorder was affecting their business and employees and decided to be a part of the solution. Those who enter into Project Save ME and get into recovery have the potential to be an employee of C. N. Brown. Individuals who have reached six months of recovery and received a letter of recommendation from their counseling can get help with getting a job at a local Big Apple store.
The liaison between the Western Maine Addiction Recovery Initiative and C. N. Brown has talked about how positive the partnership has been and a willingness to reach out to other businesses to bring more potential employment options to Project Save ME. The Western DCC is looking forward to extending the project to the other two counties in the district as well.