Leaders Quest: A quest to change the opiate crisis.

This morning I had the honor of spending time with a group of leaders in the biotech industry who joined a national Leaders Quest to learn about how this crisis is affecting small communities, including the one I live and work in.

What an emotional day. I have talked in previous blog posts about my client who is my true success story, as well as my teenage girl client who I had to notify that her mother passed away from an overdose. Today, they were both in the same room, sharing their stories, comparing “notes” and giving each other inspirational pep talks. It was wonderful. Such a unique experience to bring two clients, who were a large part of my casework “world” together in one room to share their stories with others.

I was able to take away some interesting thoughts after our meeting this morning. The biotech members who joined us had lots of wonderful questions for all of us and listened as we told what we consider to be “our normal”. To others, it’s unique, and not “normal”. It’s hard to listen to and comprehend but they did with grace and understanding. We were then able to ask questions ourselves, to these members and see how they plan to make changes with this crisis.

I am really happy and honored to have been asked to be a part of this “quest” as it gives me hope that influential people are working hard to truly understand this epidemic we face daily.  Moreso, the human aspect of “helping and changing the world” is showing it’s true colors. Day to day, often as social workers, first responders, counselors, families, and children we lose hope that anything will change. We watch the news and see our president and policymakers talk about what they will implement to combat addictions, money they will allocate, and naming it a public health crisis. But in the small rural northeastern part of Ohio, where I sit and write this blog, it’s often hard to see those things helping on a small scale.

When the meeting was over, I took both my prior clients to lunch. We talked about the meeting, our hopes, shared stories and laughed. Wow. It great to be able to do this. It showed me that there is hope. Hope for addicts, children, and hopefully, in the long run, hope for the big picture.

~Social Work Superhero



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