Monthly Archives: March 2012

Former Chicago Bear Mike Richardson promotes recovery in visit with teens at Rosecrance

Super Bowl winner from 1985 team tells story of addiction and recovery

Former 1985 Chicago Bear Mike Richardson spoke with Rosecrance teens about motivations, goals and the 12 Steps.

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ROCKFORD – “L.A. Mike” Richardson, a defensive back with the 1985 Super Bowl-winning Chicago Bears, brought his story of addiction and recovery to the Rosecrance Griffin Williamson Adolescent Treatment Center on Tuesday afternoon, March 27.

Richardson was a soloist in the famous “Super Bowl Shuffle” rap video released by the team that year to the delight of millions of fans. He played for seven seasons in the NFL, six years with the Bears and one for the San Francisco 49ers.

Richardson came to the Bears in 1983 as a second-round draft choice out of Arizona State University.

A native of the notoriously tough Compton neighborhood in Los Angeles, Richardson has spoken openly about being introduced to drugs as a young teenager. He later became enamored of the party lifestyle in the professional sports world. His substance abuse led to a string of convictions for drug offenses and a prison stint that ended in 2010.

Richardson, who now lives in Chicago, told more than 80 teens in treatment at Rosecrance that despite all his legal troubles, he had difficulty admitting he had a problem.

“That kept me sick for many years,” he said. “At one point, jails became a way of life for me and then, jails turned into prisons. I had to change or I was going to die – either on the streets or in prison.”

He told the adolescent patients that he started hearing the messages that were being repeated in numerous rehab programs he entered. One day at a time. Keep it simple. Get a sponsor.

Nothing clicked until he faced himself, Richardson said.

“I had to get honest before I could get sober,” he said.

He told the young patients: “If you’re here today, you’re here for a reason. You guys need to get honest with yourselves. Take advantage of every resource
you have here. Talk to your counselors. They are here to help.”

Richardson said he finally “got it” on Sept. 30, 2007, when he got arrested for a probation violation, which landed him in prison.

“That’s the day the officer put the handcuffs on me and said, ‘We are going to take you in,’” Richardson said. “It’s the best thing that ever happened to me – not the day I won the Super Bowl – the day I got sober.”

He urged the patients to use treatment as a new beginning. “If you are sober now, you are a success,” he said. “You don’t have to use any more.”

Richardson is trying to forge a new career in coaching and speaking to youth about the dangers of drugs.

Contact:
Judy Emerson
Director of Communications
Rosecrance Health Network
1021 N. Mulford Road
Rockford, IL 61107
815.387.5605 (office); 815.262.4685 (cell)
Email: jemerson@rosecrance.org

About Rosecrance
Rosecrance is a private not-for-profit organization offering behavioral health services for more than 14,000 children, adolescents, adults and families each year. Rosecrance provides addiction treatment through inpatient and outpatient programs in Rockford, IL, and services at six satellite offices in Chicagoland. In addition, Rosecrance offers community mental health services in Rockford and Belvidere. The organization was founded in 1916.

In the news: Former '85 Chicago Bear Mike Richardson speaks with Rosecrance teens

Former 1985 Chicago Bear Mike Richardson spoke with Rosecrance teens about motivations, goals and the 12 Steps.

The Rockford Register Star‘s Matt Trowbridge wrote in today’s newspaper about former Chicago Bear Michael Richardson’s visit with adolescent teens at Rosecrance’s adolescent Rosecrance Griffin Williamson Campus on Wednesday.

Williamson spoke to teens about motivations, goals and the 12 Steps.

From Trowbridge’s article:

Mike Richardson, a starting cornerback on the famed 1985 Chicago Bears, partied his way out of the NFL.

His friends didn’t want to talk to him. His parents and sister shunned him. Still, Richardson refused to admit he had a drug problem.

Richardson didn’t start to change, he told 88 teenagers Tuesday at Rosecrance, until someone asked him for a ride home from a drug rehab meeting. Richardson lied and said his car was in the shop. He didn’t have a car. Or even a driver’s license.

“I had to get honest to give myself a fighting chance to change,” said Richardson, who started 80 games in six seasons with the Bears and sang on Chicago’s famed “Super Bowl Shuffle” video.

“One of the most difficult phases for me was admitting I had a problem. That kept me sick for years.”

Read the complete article here.

Rosecrance Foundation 2012 Benefit brings back Michael Cavanaugh

Charity care event set for 6:30 p.m. April 16 at Giovanni’s

Michael Cavanaugh, who last performed at The Rosecrance Foundation Benefit in 2008, returns to headline the 2012 benefit on April 16.

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ROCKFORD – Rock ‘n’ roll sensation Michael Cavanaugh returns to the city on April 16 to headline the annual Rosecrance Foundation Benefit, which raises funds to serve clients who need financial assistance for substance abuse and mental health treatment.

The theme for the 2012 event is “Encore for Recovery,” marking both Cavanaugh’s return to the stage at Giovanni’s and the return of several Rosecrance alumni to tell their stories of hope. Some of these former patients have spoken at previous Benefits.

The event is set for 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $175 each or $1,500 for a table of 10. Sponsorships are still available. Buy tickets online here.

Backed by his band, the Tony- and Grammy-nominated Cavanaugh will present a program titled, “The Songs of Elton John and More.” A high-energy pianist and singer, Cavanaugh is being called the “New Voice of the Rock and Roll Songbook” for performances that pay tribute to the best songs of the genre. Since his successful run on Broadway in the hit musical “Movin’ Out,” Cavanaugh has been on tour performing sell-out programs with the nation’s premier symphonies.

Lynne Vass, Sr. VP of Development for Rosecrance, said Cavanaugh put on a stellar performance at the 2008 Rosecrance Benefit, prompting many regular attendees to ask for an encore.

“He is an enormously talented and engaging artist, and he understands our mission,” Vass said. “He was a big hit four years ago when he visited the adolescent campus in the afternoon to meet and sing for the kids. Then, he wowed the Benefit audience in the evening.”

The goal of the annual Foundation Benefit is to support The Kinley Charity Care Fund. The fund provides care for adolescents and adults whose families need financial help for treatment of substance use and/or mental health disorders.

Last year, The Kinley Fund provided a record amount of financial assistance to families seeking treatment for a loved one. The fund offered more than $425,000 in care to 262 adolescent and adult patients.

John Griffin, chairman of the Foundation Board, expressed gratitude for the generosity of benefactors in the community who support The Kinley Fund through the Benefit.

“Thousands of families have been helped through the years and many lives have been saved and permanently changed because of caring people in this community,” Griffin said.“With our troubled economy still creating pressure on families, the need is greater than ever. I’m confident that the amount of support will be greater than ever, as well.”

Since The Kinley Fund was established in 1984, it has provided almost $5 million in charity care to patients.

Each year, the Benefit features a gourmet meal, first-class entertainment and Stories of Hope from former Rosecrance patients. Also, a friend of Rosecrance will receive the Castle Award this year to recognize his or her outstanding service to the organization. The award is named for the late Clarence and Millard Castle, a father and son whose combined service to the Rosecrance board totaled more than 100 years. The 2012 Castle Award recipient has not been announced.

For information about tickets or sponsorships, call Lynne Vass at 815.387.5602 or email her here.

Contact:
Judy Emerson
Director of Communications
Rosecrance Health Network
1021 N. Mulford Road
Rockford, IL 61107
815.387.5605 (office); 815.262.4685 (cell)
Email: Click here to email Judy

About Rosecrance
Rosecrance is a private not-for-profit organization offering behavioral health services for more than 14,000 children, adolescents, adults and families each year. Rosecrance provides addiction treatment through inpatient and outpatient programs in Rockford, IL, and services at six offices in Chicagoland. Rosecrance offers community mental health services in Rockford and Belvidere. The organization was founded in 1916.

Free workshops offer strategies for families dealing with substance abuse

Eight locations set in Chicago area and Rockford

Download this news release as a PDF

ROCKFORD – Registration is open for a new workshop titled “What Can I Say to Convince Them to Quit?,” which will be offered free of charge at eight locations in northern Illinois between now and July.

The sessions are designed to help family members and others who are concerned about a loved one’s substance abuse. The workshops offer guidance to those who need to seek help for themselves and strategies for intervening with the substance abuser. The sessions feature David Lee, founder of Indiana-based Intervention Services and Technologies, Inc., the largest intervention service provider in North America.

Participants will:
– Learn new ways of interacting with a loved one regarding their use of substances
– Hear a personal story of addiction and recovery
– Gain understanding of resources for intervention and treatment

The schedule:
March 22. Crystal Lake. McHenry County Mental Health Board office, 620 Dakota St. (session offered in collaboration with McHenry County Mental Health Board)

March 29. Romeoville. Romeoville Recreation Center, 900 W. Romeo Road

April 10. Rockford. Rosecrance Griffin Williamson Campus, 1601 University Drive

April 17. Oak Lawn. Oak Lawn Public Library, Lower Level, 9427 S. Raymond Ave.

May 3. Naperville. 360 Youth Services (formerly NCO Youth and Family Services), 1935 Brookdale Road, Suite 119

May 10. Vernon Hills. College of Lake County, Southlake Campus, Room V232, 1120 S. Milwaukee Ave.

June 21. Orland Park. Orland Township Office, 14807 S. Ravinia Ave.

July 17. Oak Park. Oak Park Library, 834 Lake St. (session offered in collaboration with the Township of Oak Park and the Community Mental Health Board)

To register for one of the free workshops, please visit Rosecrance.org/events or call 815-387-5607.

Contact:
Judy Emerson
Director of Communications
Rosecrance Health Network
1021 N. Mulford Road
Rockford, IL 61107
815.387.5605 (office); 815.262.4685 (cell)
Email: Click here to email Judy

About Rosecrance
Rosecrance is a private not-for-profit organization offering behavioral health services for more than 14,000 children, adolescents, adults and families each year. Rosecrance provides addiction treatment through inpatient and outpatient programs in Rockford, IL, and services at six offices in Chicagoland. Rosecrance offers community mental health services in Rockford and Belvidere. The organization was founded in 1916.

TMS therapy featured on Dr. Oz

Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS), the first and only non-invasive treatment for depression approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), was featured Wednesday, March 14, on the Dr. Oz program.

TMS is a non-medicinal treatment for major depressive disorder. It is managed by board-certified physicians and features no systemic side effects, such as weight gain or sexual problems. TMS was approved for use by the FDA in Oct. 2008.

“TMS is an exciting addition to Rosecrance’s armamentarium in our battle against depression,” said Dr. Raymond Garcia, M.D., medical director at the Rosecrance Harrison Campus.

The Dr. Oz episode is titled “5 Controversial Solutions to Your Biggest Complaints.” Click here to watch the episode.

From the show’s description:

Dr. Oz has the newest revolutionary therapies for pain, depression and weight loss. The controversial cure for back pain, the controversial weight loss shot – what works? Is your pain all in your head? Or are you missing the warning signs of fibromyalgia? Surprising solutions you haven’t heard!

Aspen Counseling & Consulting is the only provider of TMS in Rockford. Call Aspen at 815-399-9700 for more information or a free consultation.

NAMI recognizes ‘Stars’ who serve clients in Winnebago County


Mary Gubbe Lee (from left), Stephen F. Vrtol III, Bonnie Gilmore, Sherry Fink, Cindy Krigbaum and Rachel Albreckson pose for a photo at the 2012 Get to Know NAMI event at Klehm Arboretum in Rockford.

Rosecrance staffers, Stars of Light Theatre Troupe among those honored

Download this news release as a PDF

ROCKFORD, IL – The Rockford chapter of the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) honored eight individuals and recognized a local theater troupe for excellence at an event March 6 at Klehm Arboretum.

The annual Get to Know NAMI event is designed to provide families with information they need to help loved ones who have mental illness. NAMI also uses the occasion to recognize groups and individuals who provide stellar service to those seeking treatment.

Five Rosecrance staff members were honored, along with the agency’s client-based theater troupe. NAMI recognized: Sherry Fink, a longtime counselor at the Rosecrance Ware Center; Bonnie Gilmore, manager of the Recovery Resource Center; Barbara Frederickson, volunteer coordinator at the Recovery Resource Center; and Mary Gubbe Lee, training/volunteer coordinator for Rosecrance and founder of the Stars of Light Theatre Troupe. The ceremony was emceed by Steve Vrtol of Rosecrance, who was honored for his work directing the Stars of Light and other contributions to NAMI.

Stars of Light members received individual awards for their community presentations, which are designed to educate the public about mental illness and reduce stigma. The group is made up of clients and family members, volunteers and Rosecrance staff.

Others who received NAMI awards were: Rachel Albreckson, a counselor at Rockford Intervention Center; Cindy Krigbaum, a caseworker at Stepping Stones; and Eldon Wigget, a longtime NAMI volunteer who is a consumer recovery support specialist at Singer Mental Health Center. Wigget was named the “2012 Friend of NAMI.”

View more photos of this event on Flickr or Facebook.

Contact:
Judy Emerson
Director of Communications
Rosecrance Health Network
1021 N. Mulford Road
Rockford, IL 61107
815.387.5605 (office); 815.262.4685 (cell)
Email: jemerson@rosecrance.org

About Rosecrance
Rosecrance is a private not-for-profit organization offering behavioral health services for more than 14,000 children, adolescents, adults and families each year. Rosecrance provides addiction treatment through inpatient and outpatient programs in Rockford, IL, and services at six satellite offices in Chicagoland. In addition, Rosecrance offers community mental health services in Rockford and Belvidere. The organization was founded in 1916.

Law enforcement officers graduate Rosecrance crisis intervention training


Judge Janet Holmgren, presiding judge of the Juvenile and Specialty Courts Division of the 17th Judicial Circuit Court, smiles while distributing state certificates for Rosecrance’s crisis intervention training (C.I.T.).

24 officers take 40-hour behavioral health training

Download this news release as a PDF

ROCKFORD, IL – Rosecrance awarded state certificates to 24 law enforcement officers from five area agencies on March 2 after they completed Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) training, which educated them in identifying and appropriately responding to individuals they encounter on the job who may have a mental illness.

CIT training, which dates back to 2004 in Northern Illinois, promotes community safety, said Judge Janet Holmgren, presiding judge of the Juvenile and Specialty Courts Division of the 17th Judicial Circuit Court. Holmgren spoke at the graduation ceremony and awarded the certificates.

“Officers who encounter people who are in crisis get trained in de-escalation techniques, which ensure safety of the officer, the person in crisis and the community as a whole,” Holmgren said.

Officers who took the 40-hour training were from the Winnebago County Sheriff’s Department and the cities of Rockford, South Beloit, Genoa and Sycamore. The graduation brings to more than 250 the number of law enforcement officers who have graduated from the training over 8 years.

Police departments look to these “behavioral health specialists” to respond to 9-1-1 calls and other situations that involve someone who is showing signs of a mental disturbance. The goal is to train officers to recognize when mental illness is playing a role in a disturbance or crime and to divert people who need behavioral health help away from jail or the courts, when appropriate.

“It is important for the City of Rockford Police Officers to be trained in Critical Incidents so they can effectively and efficiently de-escalate crisis situations involving people who are mentally and emotionally disturbed,” said Rockford Police Chief Chet Epperson. “Officers exposed to this special training are not only better prepared to mitigate crisis situations in the community, but possess an inclusive understanding and application of the skills required to successfully interact with a mentally ill subject in any circumstance.”

Darin Spades, a 17-year veteran of the Rockford force, said he left the Rosecrance training with better skills to deal with people he encounters on the job who have a mental illness.

“We were trained in a variety of mental health-related topics, including legal implications and the connection between mental illness and homelessness,” he said. “Some signs of mental illness closely mimic symptoms displayed by people using hallucinogenic drugs.

“This training taught me the telltale signs and symptoms of mental illness to help me make more effective and informed decisions.”

The Rosecrance program is one of only four such state-approved trainings in the state. The others are in Chicago, southern Illinois and central Illinois. The state-sanctioned curriculum requires officers to receive training in various areas, including:

– How to recognize common types of mental illness
– How to understand the experiences, viewpoints and concerns of clients
– Listening skills and intervention strategies

Mary Gubbe Lee, who conducts the annual CIT training for Rosecrance, commended law enforcement agencies for the “huge commitment” they make to their communities by sending offers to be educated in behavioral health issues. CIT training has helped hundreds of individuals receive appropriate treatment through the years rather than being incarcerated or getting involved in the court system.

Contact:
Judy Emerson
Director of Communications
Rosecrance Health Network
1021 N. Mulford Road
Rockford, IL 61107
815.387.5605 (office); 815.262.4685 (cell)
Email: jemerson@rosecrance.org

About Rosecrance
Rosecrance is a private not-for-profit organization offering behavioral health services for more than 14,000 children, adolescents, adults and families each year. Rosecrance provides addiction treatment through inpatient and outpatient programs in Rockford, IL, and services at six satellite offices in Chicagoland. In addition, Rosecrance offers community mental health services in Rockford and Belvidere. The organization was founded in 1916.

SAMHSA: 7.5 million children live with a parent with an alcohol use disorder

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) is reporting that 7.5 million children under age 18 (10.5 percent of this population) lived with a parent who has experienced an alcohol use disorder in the past year.

The report is titled Data Spotlight: Over 7 Million Children Live with a Parent with Alcohol Problems. The report is based on data from SAMHSA’s 2005-2010 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH).

Click here to download the report.

The reported numbers are higher for children living in two-parent households (11.6 percent) compared with children in single-parent households (7.2 percent).

From the SAMHSA news release:

According to the report by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), 6.1 million of these children live with two parents—with either one or both parents experiencing an alcohol use disorder in the past year.

The remaining 1.4 million of these children live in a single-parent house with a parent who has experienced an alcohol use disorder in the past year. Of these children 1.1 million lived in a single mother household and 0.3 million lived in a single father household. This study is done in conjunction with Children of Alcoholics Week, February 12-18, 2012.

Click here to read the complete news release from SAMHSA.