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Ride to Recovery Program Preparing Care Bags To Help

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
Ride to Recovery Program Preparing Care Bags To Help

A mandate from management to see how UCHRA’s Public Transportation Program could help serve local residents dealing with substance abuse issues led to the Road To Recovery Program.

Mobility Manager Ryan Henry said the program team decided to create care bags to help someone interested in recovery take the next step. The package includes a ready-to-eat meal, a blanket, a pot, simple hygiene items, and information on resources available to those dealing with homelessness and or addiction.

“I think it’s a tangible thing that people can see, and it’s also an easy way to help somebody,” Henry said. “You may not be comfortable handing out money. You may not be comfortable even in conversation sometimes not knowing what to say. And I think this is a good way to say, ‘hey, there’s people that care about you, and there’s resources out there to help you if you’re willing to take advantage of that.’ And it’s a tangible, useful item for somebody in a transit situation.”

Henry said the goal is to create 400 bags. They will be available at the UCHRA Office. The bags will also ride in some public transportation vehicles so they can be handed directly to someone in need.

Ride To Recovery also provides free rides to individuals going to and from recovery resources.

“It could be somebody from getting out of rehab, going to the next thing could be a transitional home,” Henry said. “It could be somebody trying to get to their recovery court meetings and appointments, anything like that. We want to partner with recovery courts and transitional homes to figure out sustainable ways of doing transportation, especially.”

Henry said the program began as an in-house pilot program to see if it could help people. In talking to local residents and community leaders, they looked at opportunities that UCHRA Public Transportation might be able to fill. The program started with a grant and transitioned to new areas when the grant ended.

“Homelessness is such a broad issue,” Henry said. “It can involve addiction, it can involve mental health difficulties, it can involve domestic violence situations. It can be just bad choices. And again, just to be a resource for somebody looking for a way out, and we can connect them with recovery resources, we can connect them with homelessness resources, spiritual, physical, mental and emotional resources that hopefully can encourage and be a hand up for somebody to get out of the despair they find themselves in.”

Henry said community partners can pitch in and provide resources to help with the bags. That can be with the purchase of hygiene kits or prayer cards from local churches that could be used in the kits.

“Anything like that to help encourage people to get help,” Henry said.


The post Ride to Recovery Program Preparing Care Bags To Help appeared first on News Talk 94.1/AM 1600.