Alcohol Awareness Month: Alcoholics Anonymous and its importance
LANSING, N.Y. (WENY) -- April is Alcohol Awareness Month, a time to look at the negative impact alcohol has on many people's lives. Nearly 54 percent of alcohol related deaths are due to chronic misuse, and some people don't even realize they need help.
"I think it's really important that people get information, and they get assistance. If you're sitting on the sidelines wondering 'Do I have a problem?' or 'Does someone I love have a problem with alcohol abuse?' It's really important that you know that there are people there that can help," said Angela Sullivan, the executive director for the Alcohol and Drug Council of Tompkins County.
The road to recovery can be hard, but there are resources throughout the Twin Tiers that can help. The Alcohol and Drug Council of Tompkins County is an outpatient facility for people battling substance abuse and addiction.
"I see my job as being responsible for making sure my team has the resources they need, and the leadership they need to serve our mission of helping to serve people with addiction," said Sullivan.
While it's up to each person to decide if they want to join Alcoholics Anonymous, Sullivan said it's important to get the help you need.
"Don't hesitate to call us or whoever your local provider is, they can help you come to those answers, they can help you have those difficult conversations. The whole antidote to our substance abuse challenge in this country is a lack of connectivity. And so, if people can make healthy connections, that can make all the difference. It can help people sustain their recovery, and have healthy activities to engage in," Sullivan said.
Pennsylvania Luzerne and Wyoming County Drug and Alcohol Administrator Ryan Hogan said he recalls the story of one of his clients he saw as a court ordered referral. Hogan said John accumulated a few DUIs throughout his lifetime, but John didn't think he had a problem.
"He began to buy in a little bit more and become a little more internally motivated while going through treatment, and then he finally attempted to go to an AA meeting. It was court ordered forcing him into an AA meeting, but he really enjoyed it. He found a lot of benefit from it," Hogan said.
There are plenty of resources for those who have an alcohol dependency across the region.
For AA meetings near and around Horseheads, N.Y., click here.
For AA meetings near Sayre, PA, click here.
Additional substance and alcohol abuse resources: Trinity of Chemung County, FLACRA Outpatient Services and Cayuga Addiction Recovery Services.