CUMBERLAND — The Maryland Opioid Operation Command Center has provided a prevention and education grant of $443,274 to Allegany College of Maryland for its Tackling the Opioid Epidemic: From Crisis to Opportunity project.

“The Hogan administration is pleased to support the efforts of community partners such as Allegany College of Maryland in our multi-pronged approach to addressing the opioid epidemic,” said Steve Schuh, director of the Maryland Opioid Operational Command Center. “The work that Allegany College of Maryland is doing is an example of the Prevention & Education element of our approach and represents the forward thinking that will help communities stay ahead of the opioid crisis.”

The grant will support evidence-based therapeutic and educational services (educational events, workshops and mentorship opportunities) for more than 2,000 people in Allegany County and across the state through the ACM Center for Continuing Education and Workforce Development. Working closely with local opioid prevention and treatment programs, the project utilizes a stress and trauma-relief model developed by The Center for Mind-Body Medicine to build a culture of resilience and a community-wide support system.

The project will serve community members who have been directly and indirectly impacted by the opioid crisis. It includes those in active addiction, families of addicts and the recovery community; law enforcement, first responders and health care professionals; addictions counselors, prison staff, community health workers and parole/probation staff; pre-K-12 and postsecondary educators and guidance counselors; K-12 and postsecondary students; college faculty, staff and administrators; faith community members, spiritual leaders, community leaders and support group members; and physicians, dentists, pharmacists, psychiatrists, physical therapists and athletic trainers.

“In a county ravaged by the opioid epidemic, we’re grateful for Governor Hogan and Director Schuh’s support,” Cherie Snyder, Allegany College of Maryland professor, program director and lead project facilitator, said. “The project will teach simple but proven tactics that build personal resilience while reducing the stigma associated with addiction. It addresses the physiological and psychological root causes of addiction while introducing non-pharmacological approaches to address pain and chronic physical and mental illness.”

A Tackling the Opioid Epidemic: From Crisis to Opportunity project kickoff will coincide with an all-day workshop by Dr. James Gordon, The Center for Mind-Body Medicine’s founder and executive director, on Oct. 4. Gordon will present on “The Transformation: Discovering Wholeness and Healing After Trauma” through the college’s Continuing Education program. Registration is available at allegany.edu/mind-body-connection.

The Center for Mind-Body Medicine approach has been extensively used in the United States and countries shattered by war, natural disasters, poverty and/or violence. It teaches simple self-care tools within a small group model for health, healing and self-regulation. Peer-reviewed research has shown that CMBM’s model of mind-body medicine reduces PTSD by 80%.

For more information, call 301-784-5556 or email csnyder@allegany.edu.

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