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'People are really struggling': Downtown Canal dyed purple to recognize National Recovery Day

national recovery month canal
Posted at 6:27 PM, Sep 30, 2022
and last updated 2022-09-30 18:27:09-04

INDIANAPOLIS — Hoosiers in recovery and those who help and support them gathered at the canal in Downtown Indianapolis Friday to mark National Recovery Day.

National Recovery Month is recognized every September to bring awareness to those affected by substance use disorder and alcoholism.

"I'm a month and 15 days sober ... I think I'm doing pretty well," Ashley Mash said.

With the help of treatment and peer support, Mash says she had guidance and someone to reach out to for the first time. She's a student at Hope Academy High School, which focuses on sobriety and academic success.

"As of right now I really want to graduate sober and hopefully continue to be sober throughout the rest of my life, honestly," Mash said.

Brandon George, director of the Indiana Addictions Issues Coalition, says there is hope for people struggling and those in recovery.

"Especially coming out of the pandemic, people are really struggling," George said. "One of the issues that we have is we can get people into treatment ... but what we really need is the ongoing support — housing for people, recovery coaching, ongoing recovery meetings. Trying to help people for a longer duration of time is really a critical part and our systems really aren't built for that right now."

For more information on Indiana's Next Level Recovery initiative and resources, click here.