Addiction has taken a deep toll on Tennessee families. In 2017, 1,776 Tennesseans died from an overdose, or about five people each day. The growth of this addiction crisis has left no community untouched, but we have a great resource in our communities of faith. Of the 6.6 million Tennesseans, 85% affiliate with one of the state’s 11,500 houses of faith. As TDMHSAS developed its response to this crisis, department leaders recognized the opportunity to leverage this critical, untapped network of caring individuals and faith communities as a means to help address addiction in our state.
The goals of the Faith-Based Initiative are to:
- Connect individuals struggling with addiction to treatment
- Increase knowledge of what addiction
- Facilitate understanding of substance use disorder treatment and recovery
- Understand the continuum of care and collaborate with it
- Spread awareness of the Faith-Based Initiative certification and its requirements
- Help groups understand and implement the best practice model
- Promote and improve effectiveness of the faith-based initiative and how it connects the community with recovery and support services
To get more information about TN Dept. of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services Faith-Based Initiatives Project, please visit here. To contact one of the Faith-Based Community Coordinators in the state, please visit here.