PNS National Newscast

Audio Activation
"Siri, play the Public News Service (podcast)"
"Hey Google, play the Public News Service podcast"
"Alexa, play Public News Service podcast"
or "Alexa, what's my news flash?" once you set it up in the Alexa app

2020Talks

Audio Activation
"Siri, play the 2020Talks podcast"
"Hey Google, play the 2020Talks podcast"
"Alexa, play Two-Thousand-Twenty Talks podcast"
or "Alexa, what's my news flash?" once you set it up in the Alexa app

Newscasts

PNS Daily Newscast - May 7, 2021 


President Biden proposes expanding the Pell Grant program to reach more students in need and the Navajo Nation addresses the need for tougher methane emissions rules.


2021Talks - May 7, 2021 


President Biden talks hurricane aid in Louisiana, Vice President Harris visits Rhode Island, defense officials talk about clamping down on domestic extremism in the ranks, and plan for the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan.

Pandemic Compounds Holiday Stress for Parents Working on Sobriety

Downloading Audio

Click to download

We love that you want to share our Audio! And it is helpful for us to know where it is going.
Media outlets that are interested in downloading content should go to www.newsservice.org
Click Here if you do not already have an account and need to sign up.
Please do it now, as the option to download our audio packages is ending soon

A unique program in Ohio is helping families in the children services system who are challenged by substance use disorder. (AdobeStock)
A unique program in Ohio is helping families in the children services system who are challenged by substance use disorder. (AdobeStock)
 By Mary Schuermann Kuhlman - Producer, Contact
December 21, 2020

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- The pandemic is compounding the regular stresses of the holiday season, and it's an especially challenging time for Ohioans living with substance use disorder.

The Ohio START Program connects people who've experienced substance use disorder, recovery and the children services system with families who are currently struggling with similar issues.

Ashley Durst, an Ohio START caseworker in Trumbull County, explained a support system is crucial for sobriety, so clients are advised not to isolate themselves. But they could be exposed to drinking or drug use at family gatherings.

"A lot of the cycle of addiction goes from generation to generation, and that's not the best place for them," Durst observed. "But they're also told not to isolate. So it's kind of a Catch-22."

Sarah Hayden, a family peer mentor for Warren County Children Services, said COVID is limiting in-person supports for her clients.

"For holidays, if they don't have their kids with them or they've lost loved ones or if they're just now getting to the point to where they are wanting to try to get sober, all those dynamics take a big toll on their recovery," Hayden described.

Hayden added she's trying to provide extra support to clients, with phone calls and more frequent check-ins. The program also connects clients to more intensive services, including treatment programs that can support their success.

Crystal Jameson, a family peer mentor for Trumbull County Children Services, believes Ohio START is successful because it takes an intensive, team approach and is non-judgmental.

"It's not easy to face substance abuse," Jameson remarked. "You need to have structure and that support. That's the best thing that this program offers. It's just an amazing opportunity to watch that light click on with our clients and see the changes that they make in their life."

Ohio START is currently in more than three dozen counties and is taking applications for 14 more in 2021. The program served 225 new families this year, including nearly 600 adults and more than 300 kids.

Last week, the program was approved for inclusion in a federally-funded clearinghouse that identifies and shares information about evidence-based practices in foster care.

Disclosure: Public Children Services Association of Ohio contributes to our fund for reporting on Children's Issues, Family/Father Issues, Livable Wages/Working Families, and Mental Health. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.
Best Practices