Mosaic Place, Highland Rivers Health’s new addiction recovery support center, hosted its grand opening celebration at the end of the October. Funded through a grant from the Georgia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities (DBHDD), Mosaic Place began providing services in early October, but held a grand opening celebration and ribbon cutting October 26 in Cedartown.

“Highland Rivers provides a continuum of services to help individuals with addiction and other substance use disorders, including detoxification, residential treatment, intensive outpatient and community-based services,” said Melanie Dallas, CEO of Highland Rivers Health. “But what we didn’t have until now was a recovery support community, a place where individuals in recovery could meet for ongoing support and learning.”

“Mosaic Place fills that need and will provide an excellent complement to our clinical services,” Dallas said.

Recovery community organizations, as programs such as Mosaic Place are also known, have been increasingly popular in the U.S. amid the growing realization that addiction and other substance use disorders are chronic diseases. Individuals living in recovery with substance use disorders often benefit from ongoing support from peers and others with lived experience.

According to the Recovery Research Institute, these centers help individuals at the community level by providing advocacy training, recovery information and resource mobilization, mutual-help or peer-support organization meetings (e.g., Alcoholics Anonymous, SMART Recovery, LifeRing), social activities, and other community-based services.

“Individuals living in recovery, who have lived experience and understand the challenges of addiction, can be a tremendous source of hope for those working on their recovery journey,” said Dallas. “That’s why Highland Rivers has been working to expand our peer workforce – because hope and support and encouragement are absolutely critical for recovery.”

Mosaic Place program manager Nikki Kemp is a certified peer specialist in mental health (CPS-MH) and a certified addiction recovery support specialist (CARES). Kemp was profiled in September in the Rome News Tribune as part of a series of stories about the 20th anniversary of Highland Rivers’ Women’s Outreach program.

Like most of the Mosaic Place staff, Kemp is an individual in long-term recovery who recognizes the importance of ongoing community support for people living with substance use challenges.

“All of us here at Mosaic Place are living in long-term recovery and are ready to share our strengths and hopes with others so they may find long-term recovery themselves,” said Kemp. “We believe the opposite of addiction is connection – and here at the Mosaic Place you will find connections.”

“The support from the community at our grand opening let us know that change is happening in Polk County and we are ready to fight stigma and break down barriers that addiction causes,” she said.

More than 60 people attended the grand opening celebration, including Tallapoosa Circuit Superior Court Judge Michael Murphy, Cedartown City Manager Bill Fann, who is also a member of the Highland Rivers governing board, representatives of Polk County Family Court, Polk County Sheriff’s Office, and DBHDD. Rockmart City Councilman Sherman Ross, also a Highland Rivers board member, and several individuals living in recovery also attended.

“We were both thrilled and humbled by the turn-out at the grand opening,” said CEO Dallas. “Polk County is a special community, and its support of Mosaic Place, and Highland Rivers Health generally, makes such an incredible difference to the individuals that live here. We are so proud to be a part of this community.”

Mosaic Place is open to individuals living in recovery and their families in any county served by Highland Rivers Health. The center does not provide clinical services, but provides peer support services including 12-step programs, classes and other support groups. Visit the Mosaic Place Facebook page for a schedule of upcoming classes and other activities.

Mosaic Place is located at 321 West Ave. Suite H, in Cedartown, in the lower level of the building where Highland Rivers formerly provided services for individuals with disabilities, before relocating those services to One Door Polk. Staff is hoping to recruit community volunteers that are interested in providing short classes or learning sessions on topics such as cooking, parenting, home repair, resumes and interviewing, art and music, budgeting, nutrition, exercise and life skills.

For more information about Mosaic Place, visit http://highlandrivershealth.com/mosaic-place, or call Mosaic Place at (678) 901-1445.