March 21 – 27, 2022 is National Drug and Alcohol Facts Week
What is National Drug and Alcohol Facts Week? NDAFW is an annual, nationwide observance of drug and alcohol use among youth. It was first launched in 2010 by the National Institute of Drug Abuse (NIDA).
DID YOU KNOW?
- Narcan can save a person’s life during an opioid overdose.
- Young people who vaped are four times more likely to start smoking cigarettes.
- Vaping can cause sinus infections, nose bleeds and asthma.
- Smoking marijuana can cause damage to the lungs.
- People who drink before the age of 15 are five times more likely to become addicted to alcohol.
- People ages 12-20 drink 4% of all alcohol consumed in the United States.
So, What Can You Do?
If you or someone you may know has been experiencing issues with drug or alcohol abuse, there are many providers in Lorain County who can assist. Check out the Provider Agencies directory to find the right provider for you or your loved one.
Interested in Expanding Your Knowledge About Drugs and Alcohol?
Need immediate help?
- 24/7 Crisis Hotline: 1-800-888-6161
- 24/7 Alcohol and Drug Helpline for Lorain County: 440-989-4900
- 24/7 Crisis Text Line: Text 4HOPE to 741-741
March 13 – 19 is AmeriCorps Week!
AmeriCorps is an organization that serves people throughout the United States, in areas such as education, economics, disaster response, and providing healthy futures for those that are in need. AmeriCorps Week was created to celebrate the hard work and services that AmeriCorps members provide year-round. At the MHARS Board of Lorain County, Andrea Sedlacek works as our AmeriCorps VISTA member.
Andrea Sedlacek graduated from Bowling Green State University in 2020 with her BS in Criminal Justice, as well as graduating in 2021 from Bowling Green State University with her Masters in Criminal Justice. After graduating in 2021, Sedlacek joined the MHARS Board as the AmeriCorps VISTA worker.
Andrea has been an important member of the MHARS Board, working on different grants and projects for Lorain County. She has worked on the Ohio Collaborative Program Development grant under the Ohio Program for Campus Safety and Mental Health, which provides campus programming, such as suicide prevention training and mental health screenings. Sedlacek is also involved in the Harm Reduction and Family branch and participates in Drug Take Back Day and International Overdose Awareness Day.
Thank you Andrea for everything you do for the Board and the community!Learn More
Arielle Edwards is the MHARS Board of Lorain County’s Program Officer, working with the Adult Services Director.
Arielle has worked passionately in the mental health field for more than 10 years. Before joining the MHARS Board of Lorain County in 2019, she worked at the Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court as a Probation Officer in The McDonnell Center Community Based Correctional Facility, where she served as a liaison between the facility, the Court and Probation Department. Earlier in her career, Arielle worked at Recovery Resources in Cleveland first as its EMPOWER Program Coordinator facilitating programming for incarcerated women with PTSD in a therapeutic milieu and then as a forensic liaison, in which she assisted those struggling with mental illness and substance use disorder charged in one of Cuyahoga County’s municipal courts and within the Common Pleas Court. Arielle holds a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology for Ohio University where she became a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. She also earned her Master of Arts in Forensic Psychology from Marymount University in Arlington, Virginia.Learn More
Jeanette Hinkle works at the MHARS Board of Lorain County as the Claims and IT Coordinator.
Jeanette has over 21 years of experience in mental health claims, 14 of those years being at the MHARS Board. She spent seven years at the children’s agency in Lorain County. Before entering the mental health field, she has worked at a variety of places, including working as a civilian employee for the Army. Jeanette holds two associate degrees in the areas of Business and Computers.
Jeanette is a passionate advocate for mental health and addiction.
“Mental health is important to me as I know people who suffer with mental illness and were not receiving adequate help. Getting people connected to the proper services is extremely important for not only the person with the mental illness but the people close to them as well,” she said. “I love the fact that the MHARS Board is concerned not only about the job, but the staff as well. I enjoy helping people and here at the Board I am able to help many people.”Learn More
Vinaida Ruth Reyna is the MHARS Board’s Executive Assistant.
She is a longtime resident of the City of Lorain and a graduate of Admiral King High School. She holds an Office Management Certificate from JVS. In February 2005, she was hired with the then-mental health board as a Receptionist, then Secretary and was promoted to Executive Assistant. She is the mother of four amazing young adults and grandmother to a very cool kid. She said of her work with the MHARS Board, “I enjoy being part of serving the community.” Her favorite quote comes from Ghandi: “The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.”Learn More
Mark Johnson works at the MHARS Board of Lorain County as the Chief of Behavioral Health Services and leads the Community Services Team.
Johnson also chairs the Continuum of Care Subcommittee and sits on the Steering Committee for the Lorain County Crisis Response Project. He is also the MHARS lead with the Clear Pathways Learning Community and sits on the State Crisis Task Force. Johnson is also initiating a Continuous Quality Improvement focus that is informed by data and outcomes.
He is a Licensed Independent Social Worker-Supervision, with a Master of Science in Social Administration from Case Western Reserve University. He started his career as a therapist serving children and families. He has also held several roles including Clinical Services Director for over two decades for a community-based mental health and substance use disorder treatment agency with multiple Northeast Ohio Sites.
Outside of his work with the MHARS Board, Johnson is passionate about the ASP, the Appalachian Service Project. He is an Ambassador, a Project Leader, and a Helping Hand for the ASP. The Appalachian Service Project is a non-profit organization based in Tennessee that organizes over 17,000 volunteers a year across 5 Appalachian states to work on homes for people to be warmer, safer, and drier. Johnson works with high school and college youth to lead week long mission trips with the ASP.Learn More
The Lorain County Opioid Action Team’s (LCOAT) Family Support Branch has created a new resource guide for families affected by substance use disorder.
When a loved one struggles with addiction, we may not know how to help. This guide is designed by family members of those struggling with substance use disorder to make the process of finding help a little easier.
Click here to download the printable It’s OK to Talk About It guide.Learn More
Michael Doud is the Executive Director at the MHARS (Mental Health, Addiction and Recovery Services) Board of Lorain County. Doud has spent over 30 years in the behavioral health field and most recently, Mr. Doud was the Chief Operating Officer of the Emerald Development and Economic Network, a non-profit community housing development agency in Cleveland.
Earlier in his career, he spent almost 20 years at the Alcohol, Drug Addiction & Mental Health Services Board of Cuyahoga County and also worked at the Nord Center and St. Joseph/Community Health Partners in Lorain. Mr. Doud has a BA degree from Cleveland State University and an MS degree in Social Administration from Case Western Reserve University.Learn More
Lauren works at the MHARS (Mental Health, Addiction and Recovery Services) Board of Lorain County as a Program Officer, working under the Children and Adolescent Services Director on the Community Services Team.
Lauren has worked passionately in direct mental health services for 11 years. Most recently, six of those years were spent in Lorain County. Lauren is a Board Certified Art Therapist as well as a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor and Supervisor. She is currently a professor at Ursuline College where she teaches practicum and internship students in the double master’s program, of which she is also an alumna. Previously, Lauren was a mental health therapist at The Nord Center where she led Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and Trauma Informed Care initiatives. Lauren is a founding member of two community nonprofits: The Lorain County LGBTQ+ Taskforce and Public Art Vermilion. Earlier in her career, Lauren worked at The Emily Program, The Cuyahoga County Board of Developmental Disabilities and Westside Community House. Lauren has a BA in Human Development and Family Studies from Kent State University, and a double masters in Art Therapy and Counseling from Ursuline College.
Lauren is excited about her work here at the MHARS Board.
Lauren says, “I think that something I’m most excited about is effecting change, starting needed conversations, and destigmatizing mental health and recovery needs in our community by providing support, training and education to our community.”Learn More
Patrice McKinney is the MHARS Board’s Administrative Services Director. She worked for the former mental health board from March 1995 through the merger with the former addiction board.
A lifelong Lorain County resident, born in Lorain and now living in Elyria, she is a graduate of Elyria West High School, Tiffin University and Ohio Business College, formerly Lorain Business College. Patrice holds memberships in the National Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), National Association of Government Administrators Records & Archives (NAGARA), Elyria Sunrise Rotary Club and Southside Elyria Network. She is a past chair of the #HowICope Mental Health Fair. Patrice is also a past Membership Committee Chair of the Elyria Chapter of National Association of Negro Business and Professional Women’s Club, Inc. (NANBPWC)
She is passionate about her work with the MHARS Board.
“I am a mental health and substance use disorder family member,” she said. “My mother was in recovery from mental illness before she passed away from cancer many years ago. One of my brothers suffered from schizophrenia and substance use disorder. He was on the path to recovery from SUD before he too passed away several years ago. Both received services from The Nord Center. I believe everyone suffering from mental illness and/or substance use disorder deserves a supportive, holistic network to guide them onto the road to recovery.”