Mario Motha of Farrell Family Center

1. TELL US ABOUT YOURSELF AND (IF APPLICABLE) YOUR ORGANIZATION? WHERE ARE YOU LOCATED AND WHAT IS SOME OF THE WORK THAT YOU DO?

My name is Mario Motha and I am the recovery specialist for the Farrell Family Center. I work with families impacted by the opioid epidemic. I run a weekly evidence based workshop to promote recovery for all family members impacted by addiction or substance use disorders. The workshop is an inclusive and safe space for families to work on their recovery. An emphasis is placed on wellness, nutrition and physical fitness as outlets to promote self-care and healing.

2. WHAT KINDS OF PROBLEMS HAVE YOU SEEN IN YOUR COMMUNITY AS A RESULT OF THE OPIOID EPIDEMIC?

We work with a large population that is transient. Many individuals lack stable housing, transportation and employment. As such, those factors have an immediate impact on an individual’s ability to make recovery a consistent goal.

3. WHAT HAVE YOU DONE TO HELP WITH THE PROBLEMS YOUR COMMUNITY (OR YOUR ORGANIZATION) FACES?

We have committed to relationship building with our families and making an effort to meet them where they are at. Also, we have placed an emphasis on family wellness, fitness and nutrition as building blocks to promote both personal and family recovery. Additionally, during the summer months we provide our families with a weekly veggie and fruit box to promote nutrition.

4. WHAT MOTIVATED YOU TO TRY AND HELP PEOPLE AFFECTED BY ADDICTION?

Losing a parent at a young age to substance abuse has had a profound effect on my motivation to help others. By promoting recovery through family wellness, I hope to have a positive impact on the community that I serve.

5. WHAT ARE SOME OF THE BEST PARTS ABOUT HELPING PEOPLE WHO HAVE BEEN AFFECTED BY THE OPIOID EPIDEMIC?

Being able to motivate and empower individuals through the recovery process is very gratifying.

6. IS THERE A PARTICULAR SITUATION THAT STICKS OUT IN YOUR MEMORY RELATED TO THE WAYS YOU’VE TRIED TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE?

Taking our families on a nature outing stand outs. Families that live in the city received an opportunity to connect with nature, play some soccer, bbq, watch a magic show and go fishing. Connecting families to nature and promoting a self-care component has had a positive impact on many of the families we serve.