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Spectrum Health Systems recently received  a $300,000 grant award from the Office of Justice Programs at the U.S. Department of Justice to implement a cutting-edge peer mentoring program for prisoners with substance use disorders in Massachusetts.

“Part of treating the disease of addiction is delivering tools to break the downward spiral of addiction and crime," explains Spectrum President & CEO Charles Faris.  "We work with the Massachusetts Department of Correction (DOC) to treat offenders with substance use disorders while incarcerated, and now, through this grant, we can offer offenders returning to the community experienced guidance to successfully overcome obstacles that might otherwise result in relapse and reincarceration,” he added.

Under the grant, offenders who graduate from a residential substance abuse treatment program while at a Massachusetts DOC institution and are returning to Worcester County upon release will be offered peer mentoring. Mentors will serve as liaisons to help facilitate access to employment, job training, treatment services, life skills training, and other needed services. Offenders must be within 90 days of scheduled release to be eligible for the program and express an interest in participation.

As the primary provider of substance abuse treatment for the Massachusetts Department of Corrections, Spectrum is uniquely positioned to provide a seamless continuum of services for offenders – from prison-based treatment to community-based programming. The mentoring program capitalizes on the vast experience of Spectrum in providing correctional treatment services in Massachusetts, in facilitating peer-to-peer services in Worcester County and in connecting clients to the next level of care through an extensive service continuum.

Spectrum Health Systems, Inc. is a private, not-for-profit substance abuse treatment and mental health service organization with corporate headquarters in Worcester, Massachusetts. The company currently operates more than 110 treatment programs in community and institutional settings throughout Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Maine, Maryland, Georgia, Tennessee, Iowa and Washington State.

Andrew Strecker, Development Associate 
(508) 792-5400 x7113

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