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Locals discuss addiction resources for National Recovery Month

This week’s Coffee Table on KBBI coincided with International Overdose Awareness Day and marks the beginning of National Recovery Month.

Representatives from the All Things Recovery Coalition and Homer Medical Center were guests on Wednesday morning’s show.

Jacklyn Rainwater, a facilitator with “All Things Recovery” spoke about local resources available at Megan’s Place, a twice-a-week gathering at the South Peninsula Hospital Training Center, located at 203 West Pioneer Avenue. The group meets every first and third Tuesday, from 5 to 7 p.m. The gathering offers a variety of resources for a person in recovery or experiencing addiction.

“[Attendees are able to] dispose of used needles to obtain clean needles,” Rainwater said. “Access free resources including Naloxone kits, sanitary products, referral for free HIV and Hepatitis C testing – an incredible, free, confidential community resource.”

Naloxone kits, also known as Narcan, are a nasal spray that blocks the opioid receptors in the brain and can keep a person alive until they can get treatment.

Morgan Dywer, mental health counselor at Homer Medical Center, counts it as a vital tool among many in their new Medication for Addiction Treatment program, or MAT.

Dwyer said when someone requests treatment for opioid addiction, doctors, nurses and counselors work with patients to dispense and monitor medication, connect them to necessary services and make a plan for recovery.

“We’ll be ensuring they can have transportation to and from their appointments,” she said. “What people can expect if they’re part of the program is that we make sure that you are taking your meds and do urinalysis to make sure that you’re not continuing to use other medications and putting yourself at risk of overdose.”

Local healthcare providers and recovery groups have several planned events throughout September for National Recovery Month. There’s a family bonfire on Homer’s Spit this weekend, live music at Homer Council on the Arts on Sept. 9 and a dance party at the SPARC building that takes place on the equinox.

Willy Dunne is a case manager at Cook Inlet Counseling, a local nonprofit providing outpatient treatment. He is an organizer for recovery month. He invited the community to attend the opening event, a ‘Family Recovery Story’ at Kachemak Bay campus Thursday, Sept. 1, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.

“It’s going to be a pair of speakers,'' Dunne said. “It’s a father/daughter team who are going to tell their story of addiction, recovery and how that affects families.”

There is a community discussion planned after the presentation.

You can find a calendar for Recovery Month and information about treatment and counseling at

To learn more about the MAT program, call the Homer Medical Center at (907) 299-1264.

Kathleen Gustafson came to Homer in 1999 and has been involved with KBBI since 2003. She is responsible for all aspects of local program and content creation, on-air and on-line, for KBBI.
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