POINT PLEASANT — Members of the Mason County Family Resource Network (FRN) met virtually on Tuesday to hear reports of upcoming programs, including those for families with loved ones who struggle with addiction.
During the meeting, speaker Dawn Brown presented a new program to FRN members. Brown, who works for the Mosaic Group, spoke about the Families Strong support group for families of individuals with substance abuse disorder. Brown said family members are often hidden and forgotten victims of drug abuse.
The goal of Families Strong is to minimize the negative effects of substance use on family members and loved ones, to provide support for family and friends, to change the methods of communication between family members and a substance user and to assist the substance user in getting treatment.
Brown said the group is a nine-week closed group, meeting once per week from 6:30-8 p.m. To participate, individuals must be a family member or loved one of someone with a substance use disorder, be 18 years old or older, and be able to commit to the nine week program. Currently, the groups will meet virtually.
A link to register for a group can be found on the “Families Strong West Virginia” Facebook page. Brown can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
FRN Director Greg Fowler gave members his report, which included news from the regional and state FRN meeting. Fowler said the central collaborative, which includes the organizations from Mason, Putnam, Kanawha and Boone counties, distinguished the service gaps as family support, disaster response, grant opportunities and truancy.
Fowler said the Facing Hunger Foodbank mobile truck will be in Ashton on March 4 and Mason on April 22. Fowler said after the meeting the mobile truck will be at Krodel Park in Point Pleasant on May 27.
Fowler said 10 additional vape detectors were purchased and will be placed in the county secondary schools. Previously, FRN and the Prevention Coalition purchased two detectors to be placed in one of the high schools.
The Mason County Baby Pantry, at Bellemead Church, will be making Easter baskets for participants and is looking for items to fill the baskets.
During the agency open forum, employees with Aetna, Unicare and The Health Plan announced the three Medicaid agencies will have a webinar next week to discuss benefits. The recording of the webinar will be on the “Creating Strong Families” Facebook page.
The next Mason County FRN meeting is scheduled for March 16 at 3 p.m.
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Kayla (Hawthorne) Dunham is a staff writer for Ohio Valley Publishing. Reach her at (304) 675-1333, ext. 1992.