Amarah's Corner: Please attend drug awareness symposium

Hi! My name is Amarah. Kids are important to me, and they’re important to Jesus, too.

Jesus said in Matthew 25:40 (KJV), “Whatever you’ve done unto the least of these (kids), you’ve done it unto me.”

“Kids like me” are kids and adults of all ages whose parents are, or were, drug addicts, and alcoholics; kids who have suffered, or who are suffering, abuse and neglect on multiple levels; and kids who are victims of bullying.

Hey, kids like me! I had the privilege to ask questions of some mothers in Alamosa County Jail about their struggle with addiction. And, today would have been the 10th story with Christina, but something really important is happening in a couple of weeks and I wanted to tell you about it ahead of time in hopes you will attend! (Christina’s story will run in next week’s column)!

My HERO, Dr. Barbara Troy, agreed to help me present this information, so here you go:
What’s happening NEW with the SLV Neonatal Substance Abuse Task Force? October 12th and 13th from 9:15 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., they are presenting the 2017 Neonatal Drug Exposure Awareness Symposium, IV, at Rodeway Inn of Alamosa. This is the 4th annual symposium bringing awareness for, and about, pregnant women with substance abuse, such as alcohol and heroin.

Speakers and topics at this year’s symposium include:

  • Lisa McCullough, Neonatal Nurse Practitioner-Parkview Hospital
  • Dr. Pam Gillen - Fetal Alcohol Exposure
  • Dr. Barbara Troy - new research past/present/future
  • Jillian Adams, MSW, - Illuminate Recent Research, State Programs, Next Steps
  • Updates on the local needle exchange program
  • Maintenance of pregnant women in the jail setting
  • and much, much more

You will hear:

  • discussion from providers who work in the field of addiction and who help pregnant women in jail (and the father of the baby), identify needs, and bring forth support for these families in need
  • neonatal providers discussing our babies who are sent to Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU)-Pilot program at Parkview Medical Center concerning therapeutic touch and drug-exposed newborns
  • harm reduction updates on the local needle exchange program and updates on Naloxone and where the San Luis Valley stands on saving lives
  • representatives discussing Illuminate Recent Research, State Programs, and much more
  • presentations on addiction and spirituality
  • presentations on addiction and parenting
  • discussions about Amarah’s Hope for Kids Like Me
  • people sharing personal success stories of having received drug treatment and as a result of treatment they are now functional and confident of their ability to take care of their babies and children

It is important to be non-judgmental of those who struggle with addiction. Addiction is a chronic disease and some people who struggle with addiction really do want to get well and really do want to be functional people in society. They want to be able to hold down a job, buy toys and clothing for the baby/child, pay the rent and buy groceries for their families. Remember, a newborn baby grows up to be a teenager and then grows into an adult. The goal of treatment for that baby is to help protect that baby from long-term brain damage and physical disabilities that can and will last a lifetime. Every baby deserves a chance to be healthy and every baby deserves to have healthy parents who can take care of him or her.

All of this and more is FREE of charge, and lunch is provided. Come, be our guest at the 2017 Neonatal Drug Exposure Awareness Symposium, IV, at Rodeway Inn of Alamosa, and learn about the work being done in the San Luis Valley to support and serve mothers, fathers, babies, children - families of addiction.

Thank you, Dr. Troy! And, thank you for reading my column. Write to me at Amarah’s “Kids Like Me” P.O. Box 354, Alamosa, CO 81101. If you know a kid like me, or parent, who is an addict/alcoholic, please tell him/her about “Amarah’s Corner, Kids Like Me” in the Valley Courier. Tell them to contact me, or you can contact me on their behalf. If you know a kid like me, or parent, who doesn’t have a Bible, but wants one, please, contact me. I’ll make sure he/she gets a Bible, “…and all the earth may know there is a God…” (1 Samuel 17:46, KJV).

Amarah’s “Kids Like Me” offers non-denominational World Bible School (WBS) Bible Correspondence Courses (free/postage paid) in English/Spanish to kids like me (ages 8-12), their parents, and even if you’re not a kid like me! Teens/adults take the WBS Master Series Courses so if you would like the WBS Courses, send your name/age/address and I’ll get you started ASAP! I hope to hear from you soon!
My goal is to help kids like me, and I want to help their parents, too. Until next time, remember, Jesus Loves You, and JESUS IS LORD!