“Capital Recovery Center” Created To Assist With Substance Abuse, Opening Spring 2020

Video and reporting by: Isaiah Showell

Photo from left to right: Douglas Rainear, Matt Rudd, Edward Bethea,Joseph Derella, Jack Surrency, Melissa Niles, Darlene Barber, Robert Austino, Jerry Velazquez, Celeste Riley, Curtis Edwards, Albert Kelly, and Bill Whelan. (Photo courtesy of Cumberland County Board of Chosen Freeholders.)

BRIDGETON, N.J. – As part of its ongoing effort to combat drug and alcohol abuse and the local effects of the national opiate addiction crisis, the Cumberland County Board of Chosen Freeholders held a dedication ceremony for the “Capital Recovery Center” on October 28.

The recovery center is conveniently located at 72 North Pearl Street in Bridgeton and will be operated under the direction of Cumberland County’s Department of Human Services’ Division of Mental Health and Addiction Services. In describing the recovery center, Clinical Director Melissa Niles stated in a press release, “The Capital Recovery Center will provide a place [where] the Cumberland County Department of Human Services can focus the local community’s recovery support services.” She explained that “recovery capital” is described as an individual’s resources and assets including family, friends, and social/community engagement. According to Niles, the Capital Recovery Center is not a treatment facility and will not duplicate existing resources; rather it will provide volunteer peer-to-peer services in a recovery oriented sanctuary.

“The Center’s Peer Recovery Specialists will receive referrals from existing programs, such as Cumberland C.A.R.E.S., upon the discharge of people from detoxification admissions, residential treatment, jails, hospitals, and other institutions”, explained Niles. The Recovery Center will maintain a structured schedule and calendar of events featuring recovery-related workshops, training sessions, meetings, services, and social events. In describing the need for the facility, Freeholder Director Joseph Derella stated in a press release, “The recovery center will increase “recovery capital” and empower friends and family to help sustain recovery.”

Statistically, only an average of 5% of people who complete stand-alone detoxification services (withdrawal management) will sustain abstinence. Alcohol and Substance Use Disorders are chronic, progressive, incurable, and fatal if left untreated. “Without on-going support, a person experiences more frequent relapses”, said Niles.

The recovery center will be the location for regularly-scheduled educational sessions on topics such as co-occurring disorders. Deputy Freeholder Director Darlene Barber explained, “The recovery center will be very attractive to those in long-term recovery as well as family and friends who want to volunteer their time to promote recovery.” In summarizing the value of the recovery center, Freeholder Barber added, “The Capital Recovery Center helps leverage the individual’s personal resources to avoid relapses and costly incarcerations that often accompany addiction.”

The Capital Recovery Center is anticipated to open in spring of 2020. For more information, contact Cumberland County Department of Human Services, Ashleigh Huff at 856-459-3082.