WV Addiction Helpline Awarded Peer Support Grant
HELP4WV has a New Tool to Aid in Recovery
HELP4WV, which offers a 24/7 substance abuse and behavioral health helpline, 1-844-HELP-4-WV, has been awarded a new grant to help those struggling with addiction. The West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources–Bureau for Behavioral Health and Health Facilities awarded the program a grant to implement a statewide peer-coaching program.
A peer coach is a person in long-term recovery from addiction who provides support for those just entering recovery. Unlike a therapist, who may delve into deeper issues, the peer coach assists in practical ways by identifying and helping to remove obstacles to recovery. They also link the newly recovering person to the recovery community. For instance, the peer coach may take the newly recovering person to their first support group meeting, or point out things in their environment that could trigger relapse.
Heather McDaniel, HELP4WV Director, says the addition of this service will greatly help reduce relapse. She said, “We set callers up with treatment for their addiction, but true recovery goes beyond the rehab center or the doctor’s office. These peer coaches have been there, and they understand the barriers the person is facing. They may be the first to point out when the person is falling into old patterns that may contribute to a relapse. I think our callers will be very receptive to this, and it’s going to make a big difference in outcomes.”
Since beginning operations in September of 2015, the HELP4WV program has taken over 6,000 calls as they help West Virginia residents get connected with a resource to help them combat their addiction.