June 09, 2010
Over 240 individuals in recovery, mental health professionals, family members and community leaders participated in “Recovery: How far have we come? Where are we going?,” The Margaret Clark Morgan Foundation’s forum June 9 at NEOUCOM’s conference center in Rootstown, Ohio.

Highlights included an inspiring presentation from Fred Frese, PhD, a renowned psychologist and mental health advocate who passionately described his hospitalizations and career experiences living with schizophrenia. Mary Kay Smith, MD, a psychiatrist and medical educator at the University of Toledo, provided compelling data on why mental health organizations need to develop and implement training that promotes greater awareness, acceptance and adoption of mental health recovery principles and practices.

Rev. John Schluep, DMin, Senior Pastor at the First Congregational Church of Tallmadge and founder of “Warriors Journey Home Ministry: Listen – Speak- Heal” encouraged us to accept that it is the community’s responsibility to “hear” the truth of war and military service in order to help our veterans heal. Cheryl Gagne, ScD, from the Center for Psychiatric Rehabilitation, discussed the role of hope throughout the recovery process and ways to inspire it in ourselves, the environment and our daily activities.

Attendees were encouraged to participate in reflective activities throughout the day. Hands for Recovery, is a project that promotes creativity by drawing the meaning of recovery on the palm of the hand and having a snapshot taken of the hand to be included in a collage. The collage will contain hand images of nationally known mental health advocates, individuals in recovery, family and community members. My voice, my words, my recovery provided an opportunity to have “your voice” heard through videotaped interviewing. Each person was able to share their personal thoughts and stories about Recovery and mental illness. Steven Kopecky, MS, from the Mental Health Recovery Center in Clinton County moderated the day and reinforced the mantra “Nothing about me without me.”

Handouts:

Cheryl Gagne’s Slides: Inspiring Hope – A People’s Guide (PDF)
Fred Frese – Recovery Experience (PDF)
John Schluep – Warriors Journey (PDF)
Mary Kay Smith Slides – The Future of Recovery (PDF)
SAMHSA Recovery Statement (PDF)
Steven Kopecky Slides – Where do we go from here? (PDF)