The month of March signifies the end of a cold winter and the beginning of spring. We begin to get hints of warmer weather that is right around the corner, flowers can be seen poking up through the ground, and piles of snow finally start to melt away.
We are sharing in that spirit of rejuvenation here at the city of New Britain. Earlier this month we officially launched New Britain Recovers. This initiative is the culmination of years of hard work to give a hand up to those who need it most.
New Britain Recovers was created to save lives. I am acutely aware of the tragedy of drug, alcohol and opioid dependency and the sweeping heights it has reached in our community. We were already facing a public health crisis before the covid-19 pandemic struck. Over the years, we have worked to address these issues through our task force to end homelessness Building Hope Together, the Mayor’s Opioid Task Force and the Central CT H.O.P.E initiative (Heroin/Opioid Prevention & Education).
New Britain Recovers is now a consortium of individuals and community resources encompassing and providing services for the areas of homelessness, addiction and youth prevention efforts. By bringing together those previously working separately to address these areas of need, we created a more efficient and effective group that is a “one-stop-shop” providing services through a more holistic approach. This ensures resident needs are met, gaps in services are filled, and the necessary support systems are in place.
The city’s Opioid Task Force, homelessness plan and Local Prevention Council have come together under the New Britain Recovers umbrella. Through my tenure as mayor, I have watched the needs of the New Britain community evolve and it has become evident that there was a necessity for an all encompassing social and human services initiative to be coordinated in order to assist vulnerable populations and support city youth in a more efficient way. Eliminating redundancies and increasing access to a wide range of resources within the city of New Britain makes receiving help much easier for those who need it.
Our partners will now be able to align and promote integrated support systems while also providing public education around behavioral health, substance abuse and prevention methods. New Britain Recovers is truly a collaborative effort spanning across a wide range of organizations who provide specialized services to those seeking help. Without their expertise and dedication, the services provided through this initiative would not be possible. Our community partners are invaluable and make a real difference in the lives of New Britain residents every day.
The mission behind the New Britain Recovers initiative is a source of personal passion. I believe that government has the ability to give a hand up to those who need it the most, and I feel strongly that when we lead with care and compassion, all of New Britain can win. Find out more information about New Britain Recovers at www.nbrecovers.org .
Erin Stewart is the mayor of New Britain