JAMESTOWN – National Recovery Month was celebrated in Jamestown recently with a Recovery Walk and the honoring of three individuals for their substantial contributions to the recovery movement locally.
The Walk began and ended at the Mental Health Association in Chautauqua County (MHA) in the Gateway Center on Water Street.
MHA Associate Director Steven Cobb recognized Krista Camarata, Director of Community Impact at the United Way of Southern Chautauqua County. Camarata was praised as a strong advocate for prevention, treatment and recovery and for her work with Chautauqua Bright Spots that supports and promotes all the positive things happening in Chautauqua County.
Chautauqua Alcohol & Substance Abuse Council (CASAC) Associate Director Laurie Reynolds applauded Lauri Keller for the third successful memorial walk to benefit A Fresh Start. Keller organizes the Walks in remembrance of her daughter, McKenzie Paulson, and others who have suffered from substance use disorders.
CASAC Executive Director Melanie Witkowski commended Sheridan Smith for his work with the youth development program Awareness Theatre. Smith is creator of the video Recover Jamestown and has an ongoing commitment to Refuge Recovery groups at the MHA and St. Luke’s Episcopal Church.
Presentations to the honorees were made by State Senator Andrew Goodell and by Katrina Fuller on behalf of Assemblyman Tom Reed.
Chautauqua County Adult, Child & Family Services Deputy Commissioner Leanna Luka-Conley presented a proclamation on behalf of County Executive George Borello.
Jamestown City Council President Marie Carrubba read a proclamation of National Recovery Month by Mayor Sam Teresi.
UPMC Chautauqua provided refreshments and information for the event that was free and open to the public.
The Recovery Walk was made possible by the collaborative efforts of the Chautauqua Alcohol & Substance Abuse Council, Chautauqua County Department of Mental Hygiene, Chautauqua Tapestry, Evergreen Health Services, HOPE Chautauqua, Mental Health Association, and United Way of Southern Chautauqua County.
An MHA Recovery Jam followed the Recovery Walk. Presentations included poetry, stories, a violin solo, and appreciations for help supporting a variety of recovery stories.
The MHA is a peer recovery support center offering recovery coaching, peer support services, peer support groups, advocacy, veterans support, employment and job support, trainings, and family support. The MHA provides linkages to mental health and substance use treatment, primary care doctors, health and human services, and is available to assist adult individuals in identifying community resources for healthier living.
Anyone with questions or in need of services for themselves or a family member is welcome to call or stop in at Door 14 in the rear of the Gateway Center, 31 Water Street, Jamestown. Hours are Monday 8:30 a.m. to 7 p.m., Tuesday and Wednesday 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., Thursday 8:30 a.m. to 8 p.m., Friday 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Saturday, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
To learn more about the MHA, call (716) 661-9044 or visit www.mhachautauqua.org or www.facebook.com/MHAChautauqua.