Middle Flint Mobilize Recovery Comes to Americus
Published 8:03 pm Saturday, September 9, 2023
The Middle Flint Recovery Bus came to Americus on September 8th pulling up beside the train depot on Jackson Street. Chris Thrasher, the CEO of Substance Use Disorders and Recovery at The Clinton Foundation addressed the crowd that had gathered under the pavilion.
“We’re driving this bus across Georgia, up and down and every which way, and we’re trying to get the 800,000 people that live in long term recovery to come out and come together, to speak with one voice around one common struggle, to have a message that’s very clear. Recovery is real. We do recover, and drugs and alcohol didn’t take us out.”
“Anyone can stop using. They can lose the desire to use and they can find a new way to live.”
“It’s about bringing communities together. When I think of communities, I think of four Fs. Family, friends, faith, and food. There’s probably no better representation of that than when you get into rural Georgia, and you feel the local community vibe.”
“Too often addiction is looked at as a moral failing. It’s not. It’s a brain disease. Just as things can go wrong with the heart, the lungs, the liver, the kidneys, things can go wrong with our brain, but here is the part that is the blessing.”
“Some of the most resilient people I know are people in recovery. Addiction didn’t take them out. Addiction didn’t take me out. But we need to be able to talk about it in an open, honest way.”
Mayor Kinnamon gave an address afterward.
“We are grateful that ya’ll are here today to celebrate the reality of recovery. I have people standing with me who are members of the elected body and also members of staff of the city of Americus, and each one believes in supporting the mission of our RCO here and the mission of making recovery a reality for all who are suffering from the stigma and also from the debilitating affects of addition. Make no mistake, it is a crisis. Not just nationally as an abstraction, it is a crisis right here in this community.”
“I’d like to introduce our team in Americus, I’ll start with our director of the RCO here, Mike Karns.”
Mayor Kinnamon also introduced council member Daryl Dowdell, the city manager Diadra Powell, Chief Mark Scott, and representing the county, Sherrif Eric Bryant before making a proclamation.
“Now therefore I Lee Kinnamon Mayor of the City of Americus along with the members of the city council do hereby proclaim the month of September as Recovery Month, supporting this year’s Recovery Month’s theme, recovery is real, proclaimed this eighth day of September 2023 signed by me Lee Kinnamon Mayor attested to by our city clerk Miss Sierra Harvey.”
“We appreciate you’re being here today. We are going to ask folks to sign the bus. Every community on the bus bears the signatures of leadership and local community members and those who are in recovery and those who perhaps are needing to be in recovery. We encourage those people to step forward and take advantage of the services offered in this community.”
Senior Project Manager at the Clinton Foundation Jessica Geschke also addressed the crowd.
“I am here today to hand off this amazing token of appreciation to this community by way of overdose aid kit or OAK box. The oak box is a new initiative belonging to the Overdose Response Network within the Clinton Foundation. We are so excited to be able to donate these kits along our stops during the mobilize recovery across Georgia bus tour. Each OAK kit comes supplied with Narcan, Fentanyl testing strips, breathing masks, SAMHSA resource cards, and other harm reduction supplies.”
Ms. Geschke presented the OAK boxes to Mayor Kinnamon and Mike Karns.
The CEO of Middle Flint Health and Wellness, Angela Holt addressed the crowd, thanking the citizens and leadership for their support for recovery month. Mike Karns, the program director at New Life, talked about his passion for Georgia Rural Recovery.
“I want to speak for those who don’t feel like they have their own voice. I want to stand up for the little guy, and I want to show them by my example that recovery is real.”