PATERSON, NJ - In 2010, 31.3 million people aged 18 or older (13.7 percent of the U.S. population) received mental health services according to the 2010 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, an annual survey released by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). In 2010, 2.6 million people aged 12 or older (1.0 percent of the U.S. population) who needed treatment for an illicit drug or alcohol use problem received specialty treatment at a specialty facility in the past year.

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To showcase these issues' impact on the local community, hundreds of Passaic County residents will join forces on September 8th to celebrate National Recovery Month with an organized walk starting at 10:00 am from 77 Hamilton Street and proceeding to East Side Park in Paterson, NJ. It is sponsored by the Passaic County Division of Mental Health & Addiction Services along with the Recovery Center at Eva’s Village and other treatment providers.

The purpose of this walk is to raise awareness within our community about how professional treatment services in Passaic County are working in solidarity with the local recovery community to benefit those who suffer from substance abuse and mental disorders.

Our hope is that with increased access to prevention, treatment, and recovery support services, families, policymakers, businesses, and health care providers, will reach out to those in need to assist them in finding appropriate treatment options.  Not being able to access the appropriate treatment services, or not knowing where to find these services, should no longer be a barrier to achieving recovery.

Agencies that provide treatment services and recovery supportive services in Passaic County want to raise awareness of the importance of one's overall health and well-being, the critical need for professional treatment for those with substance use and mental disorders, and how recovery positively impacts our society as a whole.

This year’s theme, “Join the Voices for Recovery: It’s Worth It,” emphasizes that while the road to recovery may be difficult, the benefits of preventing and overcoming mental and/or substance use disorders are significant and valuable to individuals, families, and communities. Combating substance use and mental disorders positively affects the workplace with reduced absenteeism and job turnover, improved productivity, and reduced health care costs. Relationships grow stronger once an individual is in recovery, and recovery positively benefits one's overall health and improves their quality of life.

Recovery Month spreads the message that behavioral health is an essential part of health and one's overall wellness, and that prevention works, treatment is effective, and people can and do recover from substance use and mental disorders. Recovery Month highlights the importance of communities nationwide to promote prevention, treatment, and recovery services not only in September, but throughout the year.

The Walk celebrates individuals who have sustained long-term recovery and honors people and organizations that make recovery possible. An added benefit of the celebration is that it provides hope to individuals and families who have been affected by the disease of addiction or mental illness.

For more information about the Passaic County Recovery Walk, call the Recovery Center at Eva’s Village at 973.754.6784.