What would you say is the number one public health concern facing our nation? That's the question Julie McElrath, University High School, and Lynn Sherman, Youth Recovery Network, posed to a room of local philanthropic leaders last Tuesday at the Foundation's monthly series, Austin Area Funders.
Their answer? Addiction. It can come in different shapes and forms, but ultimately it is the biggest public health concern facing both adults and youth. Overdose is the number one cause of death for people under 50, and 1 in 6 young adults (18-25) are addicted to a substance.
Youth Recovery Network, a fiscally sponsored project of the Foundation, serves youth aged 14 - 25 and their families and allies, whose lives are impacted by substance use in Central Texas. The network is comprised of six other nonprofits, which collectively work to provide integrated and holistic care for youth struggling with addiction and working through recovery.
"What you might not realize is treatment is just the beginning," McElrath said. It's clear that a long-term holistic approach to care is sorely needed for anyone struggling with addiction. Just like any other chronic illness such as Asthma or Type 1 Diabetes, people living with substance use disorders "need wraparound support, follow-up care, and safety nets."
That's where Youth Recovery Network comes in. They're dedicated to providing an integrated network of addiction and recovery care in Central Texas. This covers everything from detox treatments to family programs and lifestyle and wellness support. In the future, leaders of the Youth Recovery Network dream of developing fully co-located services and sober housing within the Austin area—something that's never been done before.
Thank you again to Julie, Lynn and our attendees for your work and support in our community. Continue to follow Youth Recovery Network’s work at: youthrecoverynetwork.org
Are you part of a Central Texas Foundation interested in attending our next Austin Area Funders event? Email firstname.lastname@example.org for details on next month's event!