Lifeline for Parents and Families In Need of Help for a Loved One’s Substance Use
NEW YORK – December 19, 2018 – Partnership for Drug-Free Kids, the nation’s leading nonprofit committed to helping families struggling with their son’s or daughter’s substance use, today announced that it has extended the hours of its free Parent Helpline.
The bilingual Helpline is staffed by Parent Support Specialists, trained and caring Master’s-level counselors, who are ready to listen, help parents find answers and make an action plan for their child. Parent Support Specialists offer parents and caregivers the support and resources needed to care for a loved one who is struggling with substances. Families can connect with the Helpline via the website, drugfree.org, by phone at 855-DRUGFREE, through text messaging and Facebook Messenger. Help is available in English and Spanish.
The extended hours on the Helpline are now Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. EST – 12:00 a.m. EST. Weekend hours on Saturday and Sunday will continue to be 12:00 p.m. EST – 5:00 p.m. EST.
Through the Helpline, families can be connected to the Partnership’s Parent Coaching program, which now boasts more than 300 volunteer parent coaches nationwide. Families in this program are matched with another parent or family member who has lived experience with their own child’s substance use. This peer-to-peer coaching offers families the support of someone who has been through a similar experience and can offer guidance from this personal perspective. Parents learn how to stay connected to their loved one and get support and encouragement from someone who has walked in their shoes. Learn more about Parent Coaching.
“We know from research that empowering parents and caregivers with evidence-based information and support is critical to ensuring better outcomes for their loved one,” said Rachel Chernick, Director of Clinical Research for Partnership for Drug-Free Kids. “We are so pleased to be extending our availability to families for even more hours each day, particularly during the later evening hours when parents are home from work and have more time to reach out. This expansion of the service also allows us to reach more families on the West Coast during after-work hours.”
Parents and Families Can Reach the Partnership’s Helpline in Various Ways:
- Call (855-DRUGFREE), 1-855-378-4373: Parent Support Specialists will listen to parents share their story – the challenges, setbacks, obstacles and myriad of emotions that can accompany a child’s substance use. Given that there is no one-size-fits-all approach and each family is unique, a Parent Support Specialist works with them to develop a personalized course of action, offering tools and resources that meet their individual needs.
- Send an E-mail: E-mail the Helpline (firstname.lastname@example.org) to begin getting personalized help and support. Parent Support Specialists will respond via e-mail within 24-48 hours and work with a family to make a plan of action.
- Send a Text Message to 55753: Start a dialogue and receive one-to-one guidance. Helpline Specialists will respond via text message within 24-48 hours.
- Facebook Messenger: Parents can contact Parent Support Specialists and request help by sending a message within Facebook Messenger, using their Facebook
“The Partnership’s Parent Support Specialists will meet parents wherever they are on their journey and can communicate with parents in whatever way they feel most comfortable receiving help,” said Fred Muench, President and CEO of the Partnership for Drug-Free Kids. “Some families might have a feeling or suspicion that their child is using substances and aren’t sure what to do next; some families have a child who has struggled with substance use disorder for years and need more resources and advice on what treatment is best. Regardless of their location, their financial situation, whether they speak English or Spanish, or where they fall on the continuum of use, they can receive personalized, free support.”
To learn more, please visit drugfree.org.
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